Top News: January 31, 2012

Egyptian protesters after January 25

Political coalitions led by the Revolutionary Youth Union as well as women’s groups are organizing mass marches on January 31, dubbed, “Determination Tuesday,” converging on the parliament building to demand an end to military rule.


1) The Muslim Brotherhood, al-Gama’a al-Islamiya and the Salafis are all boycotting the planned demonstrations. [al-Ahram, English, 1/31/2012] [al-Masry al-Youm, English, 1/31/2012] 


2) Independent MP Amr Hamzawy proposed bill that would move presidential elections up to April (two months earlier than planned in June), and which would put Parliament, not the military council, in charge of the electoral process. The SCAF-appointed Advisory Council is considering proposals to move up the date of elections. The SCAF issued rules regulating the presidential election, published in the Egyptian Gazette. MPs criticized the SCAF decree for denying the parliament the right to issue legislation regulating the election by preempting the People’s Assembly. The retroactive decree was dated January 19, four days before the PA’s opening session. [al-Ahram, English, 1/31/2012] [al-Masry al-Youm, English, 1/31/2012] [al-Masry al-Youm, English, 1/31/2012] [al-Shorouk, Arabic, 1/31/2012] [al-Masry al-Youm, English, 1/31/2012]

3) Presidential candidate Amr Moussa said that appointing an interim president – as Mohamed ElBaradei recommended in a new transitional initiative – would not serve the Egyptian people. Moussa also called for revisiting relations with Iran and said that Tehran is not seeking to overtake Egypt’s regional role. [al-Masry al-Youm, English, 1/31/2012] [al-Masry al-Youm, Arabic, 1/31/2012]


4) The Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) sent a letter to heads of political parties in Parliament, as well as to a number of independent MPs, urging them to end the state of emergency. [al-Masry al-Youm, English, 1/31/2012] 


5) US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta urged Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi to lift a travel ban on Americans working for NGOs in Egypt on January 31. [al-Masry al-Youm, English, 1/31/2012]

6) A White House statement expressed concerned and disappointed about the deteriorating situation for US NGOs in Egypt, as several US citizens who are being prevented from leaving the country took shelter at the American embassy. [al-Masry al-Youm, English, 1/31/2012] [al-Masry al-Youm, Arabic, 1/31/2012]

Photo credit: AP Photo

Image: egyptprotesters.jpg