On May 25, Egypt's Supreme Constitutional Court (SCC) rejected the draft electoral law that the Shura Council had referred to it a month and a half earlier. The SCC found that the draft law did not conform to the 2012 constitution on several grounds, some relatively minor and others far more consequential. This was the third time that the courts have delayed the electoral process. The SCC also issued a number of important rulings on June 2: the SCC ruled that the Shura Council was elected on the basis of an unconstitutional electoral law, severely damaging its legitimacy; secondly, it ruled that the constituent assembly that was established in June 2012 was also unconstitutional, but also found that the 2012 constitution should remain in effect, given that it was approved in a popular referendum.
*Countries officially designated as CPCs by the U.S. Department of State
Justification of Commission Recommendations for Tier 1 CPC Designation
Egypt: During the reporting period, the Egyptian transitional and newly elected governments have made some improvements related to freedom of religion or belief and there was positive societal progress between religious communities. Nevertheless, during a February 2013 visit to Egypt, USCIRF found that the Egyptian government continued to engage in and tolerate systematic, ongoing, and egregious violations of freedom of thought, conscience and religion or belief. Despite a significant decrease in the number of fatalities and injuries from sectarian violence during the reporting period, Coptic Orthodox Christians, and their property, continued to experience sustained attacks. In many cases, the government failed or was slow to protect religious minorities from violence. This violence and the failure to convict those responsible continued to foster a climate of impunity. Read full report
Egypt is a republic led by President Mohamed Morsy. The government’s source of authority for all but the final six days of the year was the provisional constitution issued by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) in March 2011, which was based on the 1971 constitution, and supplemental constitutional declarations issued by President Morsy on August 12 and November 22. The August 12 declaration abrogated a June 18 constitutional declaration by the SCAF that granted it sweeping executive and legislative authorities and ceded these authorities to President Morsy; the November 22 declaration removed executive decisions from judicial oversight. On December 25, voters approved a new constitution by popular referendum, cancelling the November 22 declaration.
Given the long history of Muslim Brotherhood activity in this country, its declared objective to "destroy the Western civilization from within," and the extensive evidence of successful influence operations at the highest levels of the U.S. government, it is urgent that we recognize this clear and present danger that threatens not only our Republic but the values of Western civilization.
Ensure Effective Investigation, Amend Discriminatory Laws
Egyptian authorities should bring to justice those responsible for the sectarian violence that left five Christians and one Muslim dead on April 5, 2013, in the town of Khosus, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities should also investigate police failure to intervene effectively to prevent an escalation of violence outside the main Coptic cathedral in Cairo on April 7, after a funeral service for the Christians killed at Khosus.
Coptic Solidarity is a U.S. public charity organization under section 501 (C) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions are deductible under Section 170 of the Code.
Coptic Solidarity 2014 Conference
The Annual Conference was held in Washington, D.C. on June 26-28, 2014.