Egypt court says it has no power to dissolve Nour Party

Ahram Online, Monday 22 Sep 2014

A lawyer had filed a lawsuit to temporarily ban the activities of the Salafist party and ban it from running for parliament

A woman looks through her window above an electoral slogan for Salafi political party Al-Nour that reads, "Together hand in hand we build the country through religion" (Photo: AP)

A Cairo court said on Monday it lacks jurisdiction to rule on a lawsuit calling for a temporary ban on the activities of the Salafist Nour Party.

Naguib Gabriel, lawyer and head of the Egyptian Union for Human Rights, had filed a lawsuit calling for a temporary freeze on the Nour Party's activities and a ban on it running in upcoming parliamentary elections.

However, the Cairo court for urgent matters said it did not have jurisdiction to rule on the matter.

Gabriel based his case on article 74 of the 2014 constitution, which states that "it is not permissible to form political parties on the basis of religion," adding that only a court order can dissolve a party.

The Nour Party is the political arm of the Salafist Call, one of the largest conservative religious groups in Egypt. Its Nour Party was founded following the 2011 uprising.

When Mohamed Morsi, who hails from the Muslim Brotherhood, was elected president in 2012, the party became one of his supporters. However, it took a neutral stance during the 30 June 2013 protests that called for his ouster as the Brotherhood held counter demonstrations, causing a political rift. However, the party supported the transitional roadmap agreed upon by anti-Morsi forces on 3 July then supported ex-army chief Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi in his presidential bid.


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