Rep. Franks Urges Egypt Referendum Delay
In a piece for Politico, Rep. Trent Franks criticizes Egyptian President Mohammad Morsi for going forward with the constitutional referendum, and he calls the constitution “profoundly dangerous.” He adds, “Let us stand with the brave protesters who risk their lives to defend fundamental, internationally-recognized rights. If we fail to press Morsi to delay the constitutional referendum and allow for the real national debate that is mandated by Egyptian law, the entire legal framework that holds together equality for all Egyptian society could be undermined. Morsi, in Mubarak-like fashion, is not listening to the calls from his opposition. The United States and the Obama administration in particular need to side with the principles of freedom and democracy and strongly oppose authoritarian rule in Egypt.”
Ahead of the referendum, the U.S. State Department called on “President Morsi, as the first democratically elected leader of Egypt, to lead the effort before, during, and after the voting to continue to try to build a national consensus.”
Additionally, Issandr El Amrani offers an analysis of Egypt’s current crisis, saying “Egypt is in the grip of its worst political crisis since President Hosni Mubarak was deposed two years ago, and shifts in the three-way balance of power between Islamists, secularists and the military make the outcome more difficult to predict.” He also offers insight into some of the contentious portions of the draft constitution. Finally, Maplecroft, a risk analysis company, released its Human Rights Risk Atlas for 2013, which placed Egypt at an “extreme” risk of human rights violations.