Nieuws

Egyptian government resigns

On 24 February the Egyptian government of interim Prime Minister Hazem El-Beblawi handed in its resignation to President Mansour. President Mansour asked El-Beblawi to run the government’s affairs until an new prime minister is selected. El-Beblawi gave no clear reason for his decision, but it is widely believed the cabinet made way for Army Chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to declare his candidacy for president, who was till now minister of defense.

Eritrea’s vluchtelingen

Vorige week publiceerde Human Right Watch een rapport over de onmenselijke omstandigheden waar vluchtelingen uit Eritrea zich bevinden. In het afgelopen decennium zijn honderden Eritreërs in kampen in Soedan en Egypte maandenlang gemarteld en verkracht door mensensmokkelaars. Dit gebeurde vaak in samenwerking met de lokale Egyptische en Soedanese autoriteiten. De mensenhandelaren krijgen niet alleen geld voor het smokkelen, maar proberen via de martelingen ook geld los te krijgen van de familie van de vluchtelingen. In plaats van de vluchtelingen via Egypte en Libië naar Europa door te voeren, houden de smokkelaars hen vast in kampen en melden de ontvoeringen bij hun familie. Om ze sneller te laten betalen worden de vluchtelingen soms duidelijk hoorbaar over de telefoon gemarteld.

Afrika’s ‘War on Terror’

In Mombassa, Kenia, is de politie vorige week met groot geschut een moskee binnengevallen en heeft op hardhandige wijze meer dan 100 jongeren opgepakt. De veelal minderjarige jongens werden ervan verdacht om Al-Shabaab militanten te rekruteren. Sinds de terroristische aanslag in Nairobi eind september doet de Keniaanse regering er alles aan om moslim extremisme uit te bannen. Toch lijkt de locus van het moslim terrorisme te verschuiven van landen als Afghanistan en Jemen naar Afrika. Vooral landen als Kenia, Somalië, Nigeria, Mali en Algerije komen steeds vaker in het nieuws als het gaat om aanslagen en terroristische groeperingen. Naast de regeringen van deze landen zelf zet het Westen ook stappen om dit te voorkomen. Maar tegen wie vechten ze en met welke tactieken? En nog belangrijker: waarom mengt het Westen zich in deze strijd? Een kort overzicht.

Leftist opposition leader Sabahi announces to run in Egypt’s presidential elections

Leftist Egyptian politician Hamdeem Sabahi has announced that he will run for president of Egypt, making him the first candidate to officially enter the presidential race. Sabahi has regularly expressed his intention to run for president but waited till last Saturday, 8 February, to announce his decision. Sabahi will probably have to contest the popular Army Chief Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, who has not yet announced his candidacy.

3 Vragen aan...Sami Razgallah van de zusterpartij Ettakatol in Tunesië

On 26 January the Tunisian Parliament adopted a new constitution, the first since the overthrow of the country’s long-time ruler Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali in 2011. The new constitution replaces the constitution written in 1956 after Tunisia’s independence from France. The new constitution, which was passed by 200 votes from 216, is seen as a crucial step to getting the democratic transition back on track for establishing full democracy. We have asked Sami Razgallah, from the social democratic party in Tunisia Ettakatol, what the main issues in this new Constitution are and what challenges he foresees for his country.

Libya: towards a new constitution

Libya will elect an assembly on February 20 to draft a constitution intended to advance transition to democracy. The assembly will also attempt to break with the difficulties and political instability the country faces after the overthrow of Gaddafi more than two years ago

Egypte drie jaar na de revolutie

Sinds de revolutie van 25 januari 2011 en de val van Hosni Moebarak is er veel gebeurd in Egypte. De Moslimbroederschap kwam na de eerste vrije verkiezingen aan de macht en een nieuwe grondwet werd aangenomen. Vervolgens werden de islamisten en president Mohammed Morsi van de Moslimbroederschap na ruim een jaar afgezet door het leger, werd er een tijdelijke regering gevormd en weer een nieuwe grondwet aangenomen. Ondertussen zijn er duizenden mensen omgekomen, met name in protesten tussen het leger en aanhangers van de Broederschap. Zij eisen dat de afgezette president Morsi wordt vrijgelaten en veroordelen wat zij noemen de “legercoup”.

Algerian opposition parties to boycott presidential elections

Algeria’s main Islamist party, the Movement for the Society of Peace (MSP), will boycott the presidential elections due to be held on April 17th. Party chief Abderrazak Mokri made the announcement on January 25 to journalists following two days of debate within the MSP. He said the party will boycott the election because of “the lack of real opportunity for political reform, the monopoly of those currently in power over the election and the fact that political demands for transparency are ignored.” Mokri said the authorities are seeking to “trump the will of the people to freely choose who governs.”

Tunisian assembly passes new constitution

The Tunisian parliament adopted a new constitution on January 26th, the first since the overthrow of the country’s long-time ruler Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali in 2011. The new constitution replaces the constitution written in 1956 after Tunisia’s independence from France. The new constitution, which was passed by 200 votes from 216, is seen as a crucial step to getting the democratic transition back on track for establishing full democracy. ‘This constitution was the dream of Tunisians, this constitution is proof of the revival of the revolution, this constitution creates a democratic civil nation,’ National Constituent Assembly chief and leader of the social democratic Ettakatol party, Mustapha Ben Jaafar, said.The document is seen as one of the most progressive constitutions in the Arab world and Tunisia’s compromise and progress contrasts sharply with the democratic transitions in Egypt, Libya and Yemen, which are caught up in turmoil after ousting their own longstanding leaders in 2011 revolts and uprisings. Earlier this month, Tunisia’s Prime Minister Ali Larayedh stepped down and was replaced by Mehdi Jomaa as part of a deal to ease the crisis between Tunisia’s Islamist party and its secular opposition until new elections later this year.

Egyptian voters back constitution

Participants in the first Egyptian vote of the post-Morsi era have voted overwhelmingly in favour of approving a new constitution, state media reported on January 16th. Unofficial reports stated that 37 percent of the registered voters took part in the constitutional referendum, slightly more than in the vote under ousted Islamist President Mohamed Morsi. About 90 percent of the voters approved the constitution. It is expected that the Election Commission will announce the official results on January 18th.

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