Stephen Gethins – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Stephen Gethins on 2016-04-12.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations his Department has made to the Egyptian government on recent actions taken against Egyptian non-governmental organisations.

Mr Tobias Ellwood

We are deeply concerned by growing restrictions on civil society in Egypt, including a proposed asset freeze against investigative journalist Hossam Bahgat and human rights defender Gamal Eid. After issuing a statement on 22 March, I raised this with the Egyptian Ambassador on 23 March, and again on 11 April. Our Ambassador to Cairo raised our concerns over restrictions on civil society with the Minister of Health and with senior officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in February 2016.

I encourage the Government of Egypt to work with civil society organisations to implement the rights guaranteed by the Egyptian constitution and allow non-government organisations to operate freely.