Egyptian activists request protest against requesting protests

Egyptian activists have, in accordance with the new protest law, have sent a request for the right to protest at least two weeks in advance against the very law that is forcing them to do so.

Egyptian activists request protest against requesting protests

World Bulletin / News Desk

Egyptian activists are planning to submit the first formal petition to stage a demonstration in Cairo under the nation's new protest law, which came into effect on Monday.

Activists say that the planned protest – to be held, if approved, in Cairo's Tahrir Square – would target the new law itself.

"We will submit a notification to stage a protest against the protest law itself," Mohamed Adel, a founder of the April 6 protest movement, said in a statement.

The move comes one day after interim President Adly Mansour approved the controversial law, which the government says is needed to restore public order amid Egypt's deteriorating security situation.

The law makes it necessary for protest organizers to obtain Interior Ministry approval the three days prior to any planned protest. Violators will be fined and in some cases imprisoned.

The new law has sent shockwaves across Egypt's political scene, with some of parties warning that it would curb civil liberties and restore the Egyptian government's traditional "police mentality."

In a statement, Adel declared his intention to go to a police station in downtown Cairo on Monday to submit a petition to stage a protest on December 1.

Applicants must pay a fee of 32 Egyptian pounds (roughly $4) to submit a petition at a police station.

Adel said he would pay the fee, adding that the planned protest would carry the sarcastic slogan "Eat Popcorn" – a phrase, usually said in ridicule, that has become popular among local youths after appearing in a television commercial.

"We're serious about staging the protest," Adel told Anadolu Agency. "But we're adopting this satirical slogan to poke fun at the notion of submitting a petition to stage protests."

He added: "This law trims the right to protest."

He said demonstrators would demand the prosecution of the interior minister and the dismissal of the interim prime minister and Defense Minister Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi due to what he described as their failure to restore public security following the army's July 3 ouster of elected president Mohamed Morsi.

Adel added that demonstrators would set out towards Tahrir Square from several starting points, including eastern Cairo's iconic Rabaa al-Adawiya Square.

Last Mod: 25 Kasım 2013, 16:53
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