Egyptian human rights activist and investigative journalist Hossam Bahgat
The Egyptian prosecution has added more NGOs and individuals as defendants in the ongoing court case known as the “illegal foreign funding case,” judicial sources told Ahram Online.
The new NGOs and individuals include the Hisham Mubarak Law Centre and its manager Mostafa El-Hassan, the Cairo Centre for Human Rights and its founder Bahy El-Din Hassan, and the Right to Education Centre.
The case was opened in 2011 when the Egyptian Ministry of Justice accused several NGOs of illegally receiving funds from foreign governments and institutions. No defendants were referred to court at that stage.
However, the case has resurfaced in the past few weeks.
The NGO Nazra for Feminist Studies is being investigated in the case, with three staff being summoned for questioning by the prosecution, including founder Mozn Hassan.
Also being investigated in the case are renowned rights activists Hossam Bahgat, a journalist and founder in 2004 of the Egyptian Initiative for Personnel Rights (EIPR), and Gamal Eid, a lawyer and founder, also in 2004, of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI).
Both Bahgat and Eid have been banned from travel and their assets have been frozen, along with the assets of Eid’s wife and daughter, who is a minor.
A court is currently looking into the asset freeze decision against both Bahgat and Eid.
The prosecution imposed a gag order on the media regarding details of the case’s investigations.
On Tuesday, an Egyptian administrative court ruled that non-governmental organisations have the right to receive foreign funding. The verdict can be used in ongoing cases as a legal precedent.