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Sunday, 05 July 2020

Egypt's parliament votes in favour of extending state of emergency for 3 months

MPs said the extension is a necessity to stand up to new security and health challenges facing Egypt at the moment

Gamal Essam El-Din , Monday 4 May 2020
Egyptian Parliament
Egyptian Parliament (Photo: Al-Ahram)
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Egypt's parliament – the House of Representatives – approved Monday on a presidential decree (168/2020) extending the country’s state of emergency for three more months.

The extension started on 1pm, 28 April 2020.

The approval came one day after Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly delivered a statement before parliament saying that the extension reflects a necessity to help the state eliminate rogue and terrorist elements targeting the security of the country.

Madbouly argued that the state of emergency also helps the government address the health and economic dangers emanating from the spread of the coronavirus infections.

The emergency law was amended two weeks ago to give the president new powers necessary to contain the virus and help businesses face the crisis.

Madbouly's statement was discussed in a meeting by parliament's general committee on Monday morning.

"After deliberating on the prime minister's statement before the House on Sunday, the general committee recommends that MPs approve the new extension of the state of emergency for another three months," said the general committee report, adding that "it is a necessity to address the current security and health challenges facing Egypt at the present time and to support the state's efforts in uprooting terrorism."

The approval comes few days after army forces clashed with terrorist elements operating in North Sinai.

The military spokesperson Tamer El-Rifaie said in a statement on Sunday that the Armed Forces killed 126 takfiris in northern and central Sinai during operations “in the past period,” and the operations resulted in the “death or injury” of 15 army personnel.

The state of emergency was first imposed in April 2017 after two church bombings which killed 47 people, and has been continually extended since.

Article 2 of the decree allows security forces to “take [measures] necessary to confront the dangers and funding of terrorism and safeguard security in all parts of the country.”

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