President of Egypt, Abdul Fattah al-Sisi would not back down on the country’s sweeping security laws. Egypt will continue the path to democracy but will uphold security laws in order to achieve peace.
Before his scheduled visit to the UK, Mr. Sisi laid out Egypt’s situation is different from that of Europe, and that Egypt has been threatened by extremist groups. Furthermore, if Egypt would not strengthen its laws, it may collapse just like its neighboring states.
In August of this year, President Sisi ratified the nation’s counterterrorism law incorporating harsh punishments, including heavy fines for journalists who don’t toe the government line, Startribune reports.
According to Mr. Sisi, execution of the law is needed fight growing Islamic insurgency and help restore stability. Although Mr. Sisi asserted on granting democracy that the people deserve, the law had alarmed right groups and senior politicians that Egypt might return back to its historic authoritarian rule.
In an interview with BBC, he will rule with democracy, but Egypt needs time to achieve its goals, saying, “We want to carry out the will of the Egyptian people. They have been calling for change for four years. We want to honour their choice and will do our best to achieve a better democratic future for them.”
Activists had raised their concern that the anti-terrorism law weakened the basic rights of the citizens and situates the country in a permanent state of emergency, emulating the past rule.
Having been the person to lead the army that overthrew President Mohammed Morsi in 2013, Mr. Sisi now fully defends his security laws. He is confident that he can mobilize Egypt to achieve democracy. At this point, stability is needed for the country to be organize and to provide its people with decent standard of living.
Mr. Sisi has received critics from the West on his sweeping security laws, but he responded boldly, “Give me the environment in Europe to be available here in Egypt, and you will never need anything of the kind.”