More on police firings in Egypt

A reader writes in:

I'll share a personal experience. A member of my family was let go by the police force, a few days ago. He was promoted to the rank of General then let go. (No, he wasn't involved with any of the protests. His work with the police force was actually a different kind of role that wouldn't have had him on the streets or in any of those orders.)

As an honest police officer - I promise you there are several, though they might be a rarity - his letting go came as a surprise. Upon checking, it was found out that more honest police officers (though all close to retirement age) were similarly let go. The fact that the Ministry of Interior isn't divulging any details on who they let go is also particularly irking. It seems that if the number is close to 500, only about 50 were not close to retirement age and let go for other reasons, which of course would be too low of a number anyways.

The evidence makes it seem like this firing is largely a sham. Most of the murderers are still out there with eagles on their shoulders, masquerading as officers of the law. The Ministry of the Interior is unchanged, but what can you honestly expect when the Minister himself is a member of that corrupt club?

Bottom line: the details of who is being let go, and why, should be publicly available. The minister of interior said that there were several people charged with murder among those let go. But that doesn’t amount to more than around 60 people. How about the 500+ others? What criteria was used for their early retirement, besides age?

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Issandr El Amrani

Issandr El Amrani is a Cairo-based writer and consultant. His reporting and commentary on the Middle East and North Africa has appeared in The Economist, London Review of Books, Financial Times, The National, The Guardian, Time and other publications. He also publishes one of the longest-running blog in the region, www.arabist.net.