The Arabist

The Arabist

By Issandr El Amrani and friends.

The Swiss Maneuver

How Switzerland's silly minaret ban is being recuperated:

Swiss have made a 'grave mistake' with minaret ban: Egypt FM

(AFP) – 1 day ago
CAIRO — Egypt's top diplomat said on Thursday that a Swiss vote to ban the construction of minarets was a "grave mistake" and Europe could no longer lecture his country on human rights.
"The Swiss people will some day come to realise what a grave mistake they have made," Ahmed Abul Gheit told Egyptian television in comments carried by the official MENA news agency.
"The human rights situation in Egypt is good... Europe cannot talk to Egypt about its human rights record at a time when Switzerland is supporting a ban on minaret building," Abul Gheit said.
"People who live in glass houses should not throw stones," the minister said in the interview which focused on Egyptian-European relations.

Torture is systematic in Egypt 'police state': rights groups

By Jailan Zayan (AFP) – 1 day ago
CAIRO — Egypt has become a police state where citizens receive no protection from torture, human rights groups said in a report published on Thursday.
"The basic feature of human rights in Egypt today is the prevalence of a policy of exception in which those responsible for violations usually escape punishment amid a climate of impunity intentionally created and fostered for several decades," said the report by 16 Egyptian human rights groups.
"With this policy of impunity gradually becoming the norm, the prerogatives of the security apparatus have been expanded and Egypt has turned into a police state," the report said.

Classic Egyptian move.