Egypt's Democratic Current demands sacking of Interior Minister before elections

Ahram Online , Monday 26 Jan 2015

The liberal-leftist coalition wants reforms in police structure and protest law as conditions for participation in parliamentary elections

(Photo: Aswat Masriya)

The Democratic Current (DC) decided in an emergency meeting on Monday to set five conditions for its members to participate in the parliamentary elections scheduled for March.

The meeting of the umbrella formation of liberal and leftist parties comes after the death of leftist activist Shaimaa El-Sabagh in Cairo on Saturday at a peaceful protest that was forcefully dispersed by police generated widespread anger among liberal constituencies.

The DC includes the left-of-centre Constititution Party, Nasserist Popular Current and Karama Party, Socialist Popular Alliance Party and the Socialist Party. Egypt Social Democratic party also attended the meeting.

The meeting was held at the headquarters the Socialist Alliance Party (SAP) in downtown Cairo.

The SAP had accused on Sunday the police of "deliberately" killing its member El-Sabagh at the Saturday protest.

Khaled Dawoud, the spokesperson of the Constitution party told Ahram Online that the DC parties would make a final decision on participation in the upcoming parliamentary elections after discussing the matter with leadership bodies in their parties.

Dawoud outlined the DC conditions to Ahram Online.

- The sacking of the current Minister of Interior Mohamed Ibrahim.

- Reforming the ministry of interior.

- Amending the controversial Protest Law.

- Releasing all those detained against the background of violating the Protest Law.

- The conduction of a transparent investigation in the murder of Shaimaa El-Sabagh.

Speaking at the meeting on Monday evening, former Nasserist presidential candidate Hamdeen Sabbahi called on president Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi to reform the ministry inorder to both protect the lives of citizens and combat terrorism at the same time.

The prosecution is currently investigation the murder of the 33-year-old Shaimaa El-Sabagh.

Earlier on Monday, in a press conference held at the ministry of interior, Minister Mohamed Ibrahim stated if the prosecution proved the involvement of one of the interior ministry's personnel in her killing, he would personally hand him in to be tried.

Hundreds have been detained and sentenced to jail for breaking the November 2013 Protest Law which bans all unauthorised demonstrations. 

Minister Mohamed Ibrahim was appointed to office in early 2013 under the rule of ousted president Mohamed Morsi but kept his job after the Islamist was forced out of office in July 2013.

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