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Egypt Moves To Flush Out Civil Servants With Links To Terrorists

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Egypt Moves To Flush Out Civil Servants With Links To Terrorists

The Egyptian parliament on Monday approved legal amendments expanding the government’s ability to sack civil servants with suspected links to terrorist groups without prior disciplinary action.

A parliamentary source said the move was described by state media as a major step in a campaign to purify government bodies of members of the Muslim Brotherhood which Egypt classifies as a terrorist group.

The legal amendments are to allow the government to immediately fire any employee whose name appears on its terrorism list.

These include suspects who are still under investigation or on trial as well as those convicted in terrorism cases.

The list includes some liberal and leftist activists, and also individuals who are on the terrorism list by court orders.

They are generally subjected to an asset freeze and a travel ban but have 60 days to appeal the decision.

Public prosecutors submit requests in court to put people or groups on the list and the court decides on the matter.

READ ALSO: Property Looted, Burnt In South Africa In Protest Against Jailing Of Zuma

Since 1972, the dismissal without disciplinary action act has allowed the government to dismiss any public employee considered a threat to state security.

The amendments classify presence on the terrorist list as serious evidence of such a threat, while also allowing dismissed employees to appeal before administrative courts.

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has overseen a broad crackdown on Islamist and liberal political opponents since leading the overthrow of Muslim Brotherhood President Mohamed Mursi as army chief in 2013.

A parliamentary committee said in a report on the legal amendments that they aim to preserve Egypt’s national security and combat corruption.

According to the committee, the amendment is in line with a constitutional committee for the state to fight terrorism.

Many Egyptians welcomed the amendments on social media while others expressed concerns that the state could target any employee who is not pro-government regardless of any affiliation to Islamist groups.
Reuters

 

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Assassination Attempt On Madagascar President Foiled

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Assassination Attempt On Madagascar President Foiled

Several “foreign and Malagasy” suspects have been arrested after an alleged assassination attempt on President Andry Rajoelina was foiled.

Two French people are among several arrested in the Indian Ocean island nation on Tuesday “as part of an investigation for undermining state security”, diplomatic sources said.

“Several foreign and Madagascar nationals were arrested on Tuesday, July 20, as part of an investigation into an attack on state security,” said prosecutor Berthine Razafiarivony, in a statement released overnight.

READ ALSO: Mali’s Interim President Assimi Goita Escapes Assassination Attempt

“At this stage of the investigation, which is ongoing, the prosecutor-general’s office assures we will shed light in on this case,” she added.

During the country’s Independence Day celebrations on June 26, the gendarmerie announced that they had foiled an assassination attempt on their boss who is also the president’s right-hand man, General Richard Ravalomanana.

AFP

 

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Police Arrest Tanzanian Opposition Leaders

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Police Arrest Tanzanian Opposition Leaders

Ahead of a planned conference to demand constitutional reforms, the leader of Tanzania’s main opposition party Chadema and other members were arrested early Wednesday.

Freeman Mbowe and 10 Chadema members were rounded up in the dead of night in the northwestern port city of Mwanza, the party said on Twitter.

“We condemn the repression of the rights of Tanzanians with the strongest force. These are signs that the dictatorship that existed during the rule of President John Magufuli continues,” the party charged.

“Freeman Mbowe was accosted by an army of police officers in his hotel when he arrived at 02:30 a.m. and was arrested together with other leaders,” it said.

READ ALSO: Mali’s Interim President Assimi Goita Escapes Assassination Attempt

While the other Chadema members were taken to Mwanza police station, there was no information about Mbowe’s whereabouts.

“We want the police to come out and say where the chairman is and why he was arrested,” Chadema said.

The arrests come four months after Tanzania’s first female President Samia Suluhu Hassan took office in March following the sudden death of her predecessor Magufuli.

There have been high hopes that Hassan would usher in a change from the autocratic rule of her predecessor, who was nicknamed the “Bulldozer” for his uncompromising leadership style.

The arrests took place after Mbowe vowed to go ahead with a meeting on constitutional reforms despite Mwanza provincial authorities banning public gatherings to contain the spread of coronavirus.

“We cannot continue with the old order,” Mbowe said in a video published on Twitter on Monday, dressed in a red shirt and beret.

“We have the right to meet but are arrested, beaten, accused and taken to court for two to three years and then freed.

“If they want to arrest all members of the Chadema party, let them first expand the jails because we are all ready to be arrested and will not request bail.”

In April, Hassan had reached out to the opposition and vowed to defend democracy and basic freedoms in the East African country, which had seen a slide into autocratic rule under her predecessor.

In November 2020, several top opposition leaders including Mbowe were briefly detained after calling for mass protests against what they charged was a rigged election that returned then president Magufuli to power for a second term.

The deeply Covid-sceptic Magufuli died in March of what the authorities said was a heart condition but his political opponents insisted he had coronavirus.

Tanzania was long seen as a haven of stability and democracy in an otherwise volatile neighbourhood, but alarm grew over Magufuli’s increasingly authoritarian rule.

 

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Mali’s Interim President Assimi Goita Escapes Assassination Attempt

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Mali’s Interim President Assimi Goita Escapes Assination Attempt

Mali’s interim president, Assimi Goita was attacked by two armed men on Tuesday during the prayers for the Islamic festival of Eid al-Adha at the great mosque in the capital Bamako, an AFP journalist said.

Goita has since been taken from the scene, according to the journalist, who said it was not immediately clear whether he had been wounded.

Religious Affairs Minister Mamadou Kone told AFP that a man had “tried to kill the president with a knife” but was apprehended.

Latus Toure, the director of the Great Mosque, said an attacker had lunged for the president but wounded someone else.

AFP was not immediately able to confirm the accounts.

Mali has been struggling to contain an jihadist insurgency that first emerged in the north of the country in 2012, and has since spread to Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger.

READ ALSO: Mali Suspended From ECOWAS

Thousands of soldiers and civilians have been killed and hundreds of thousands have fled their homes.

The conflict has also been mirrored by political instability in the capital.

Colonel Goita led a coup last August, ousting elected president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita after weeks of mass protests over corruption and the long-running jihadist conflict.

In May, he ousted a transitional government that had been  entrusted with the task of leading the country back to civilian rule in February 2022.

He was then named transitional president, but has pledged to keep to the goal for returning to civilian government.

AFP

 

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