Egypt MPs condemn 'abuses' by US police ‎against black citizens

Gamal Essam El-Din , Sunday 10 Jul 2016

A number of Egyptian MPs issued statements against ‎what they called the 'excessive use of police force' ‎against blacks in the US

Egyptian Parliament, Photo taken January 10, 2016. (AFP)
Egyptian Parliament, Photo taken January 10, 2016. (AFP)

A number of Egyptian MPs said in separate statements they were “outraged” by what they called the wide use of excessive ‎force against black protesters in recent days in the ‎United States.

They also argued that the repeated ‎police shootings of black Americans ‎exposes the "illusion of American democracy and its ‎alleged respect for human rights".‎

MP Margaret Azer, deputy ‎chairman of Egypt parliament's human rights ‎committee, said in a statement that she was appalled by ‎the brutality of American police.

"I think that all ‎Egyptian MPs and defenders of human rights should ‎move to condemn the repeated brutal use of force ‎against black Americans and expose the bloody face of ‎the United States and its politicised use of the issue of ‎human rights to extort other nations," said Azer.‎

Azer's statement added that "the United States, which likes to ‎give lectures on human rights to other nations and issue ‎periodical reports on civil liberties in the world, was ‎caught red handed violating human rights and crushing ‎the peaceful protests of black Americans in the city of ‎Dallas and other US cities."‎

US protests 

Thousands of black protesters took to the streets in ‎different US cities this week after two black Americans ‎were killed by police officers in Minnesota and ‎Louisiana, and a former member of the US military shot dead ‎five cops in Texas in what he said was retaliation for the repeated killing of blacks by police.

The civil rights movement “Black Lives Matter” was formed three years ago to protest what it says is the excessive use of ‎force by police against black Americans.‎

Yosri El-Moghazi, an independent MP, also said in a ‎statement that "wide-scale street protests" in America ‎show that the US suffers from various social ills such ‎as racial discrimination, police brutality, social ‎inequality, and wide-scale violations of human rights ‎and civil liberties.

"But instead of reforming ‎themselves, the Americans opted to put a cover on ‎these ills and extort other nations on the issue of human ‎rights," said El-Moghazi.‎

El-Moghazi agrees with Azer that police brutality and ‎excessive force against black protesters should ‎come as a golden opportunity for Egyptian and Arab ‎MPs and politicians to expose the falseness of American ‎democracy and its violation of human rights.

"[The Egyptian] parliament's human rights committee should ‎hold at least one session to review bloody incidents in ‎America and give its opinion about these incidents," ‎said El-Moghazi, indicating that "committees in the US ‎congress not only issue periodical critical reports of the ‎record of human rights in Egypt and other Middle ‎Eastern countries, but they also pay visits our region to ‎give these countries lectures on human rights."‎

Ilhami Agina, an independent MP and a member of ‎parliament's human rights committee, also said in ‎a statement that "the excessive use of force ‎against black Americans in the US has exposed the ugly ‎face of Western regimes and that these ‎regimes are deeply involved in wide scale racial ‎discrimination."

"[US President Barack] Obama, who came to Cairo in 2009 to ‎give us a long lecture on human rights, might have ‎forgotten that it is America that needs radical reform," ‎said Agina.‎

Agina told reporters that he sent a letter to Egypt's ‎foreign minister Sameh Shoukry asking him to summon ‎the US ambassador in Egypt – Stephen Beecroft – to ‎convey Egypt's dissatisfaction with the excessive use of ‎force against blacks and urge the American ‎government to reform its record on human rights.

"Egypt is ‎now the head of the Arab summit and so it should give a ‎say on what happens in America, but if Shoukry does ‎not opt to do this, he should at least do as the US State ‎Department, which always grants itself the right to ‎comment on judicial and political issues in Egypt," said ‎Agina.‎

Abdel-Rehim Ali, an independent MP and journalist, ‎said in a statement that the brutal use of force against ‎black Americans also clearly shows the double-‎standards of local and international human rights ‎organisations.

"The fatal shootings of black Americans ‎on American streets have erupted amid silence from ‎radical liberal organisations like Human Rights Watch ‎and Amnesty International," said Ali.

"We know why they kept silent, because they ‎getmoney from America."

Abdel-Rehim's statement also argued that "black ‎protests in America could be the beginning of an ‎American Spring that will expose the falseness of the ‎white man’s democracy in America and its false reports ‎about human rights in the Arab world."

"I think a ‎complete plenary session in our parliament should be ‎held to expose America's ugly face and warn citizens not ‎to be deceived by its claims about democracy," said ‎Abdel-Rehim.‎

Hafez Abu Siida, director of the Egyptian Organisation ‎for Human Rights (EOHR), told reporters this week that ‎‎local human rights organisations in Egypt cannot issue ‎a statement about recent black protests in America ‎unless they have the complete and true details.

"Once ‎we will have the complete details, I think our duty will ‎be to issue strong statements against any violations of ‎human rights in the United States."‎

The liberal Free Egyptians Party also issued a statement ‎condemning the excessive use of force against African ‎Americans.

Ayman Abu Ela, the parliamentary ‎spokesman of the Free Egyptians Party, told reporters ‎that he also hopes that Egypt's parliament will hold a ‎session on America's violations of human rights.

"The US ‎administration and media, which have always accused ‎Egypt of issuing a tough protest law have nothing to say ‎now about their police brutality against black protesters," ‎said Abul Ela, also agreeing with other MPs that "the ‎recent incidents of excessive force and police ‎brutality in America have uncovered the falseness of ‎American democracy and its flawed reports about ‎human rights in the Arab world."

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