Egypt: EOHR Calls for an Investigation Into the Attack On the Students of the First Grade Secondary.

press release

EOHR calls for an investigation into the attack on the students of the first grade secondary.

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) condemns the attack that took place on Tuesday 21/5/2019 against the students who organized a demonstration in front of the General Directorate of the Ministry of Education and its offices in the governorates after the students failed in the test through "tablet".

The organization is calling for an investigation on the incident of the attack and the arrest of students in front of the ministry and some of the provinces.

Hundreds of first grade secondary students have organized a demonstration in front of the Ministry's General Office and its offices in the governorates. The students confirmed that they "failed to perform in the exams regularly on the tablets and that the schools are not prepared for this system, stressing that the system went down during the exams in a number of schools, which threatens their future." The students called for the abolition of the exam system on the tablets and the return to the old system.

Consequently, Major General Mahmoud Tawfiq, the minister of the Interior, called for the immediate release of all first-grade students who have been arrested and called for defusing the crisis which took place without any need.

The Egyptian organization emphasizes on the freedom of peaceful assembly and expression in a peaceful manner, a right that is guaranteed by international charters and conventions, including article 21 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1966, stipulates that" The right of peaceful assembly shall be recognized. No restrictions may be placed on the exercise of this right other than those imposed in conformity with the law and which are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security or public safety, public order (ordre public), the protection of public health or morals or the protection of the rights and freedoms of others." In addition to article 20 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, states that "Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly"

The organization reiterates that the law of protest in this manner is a clear restriction on the right of citizens to peaceful demonstration and deviates from the gains of the revolution of 25th of January and the 30th of June, which ensured the rights and public freedoms of citizens. Therefore, the organization calls upon the Egyptian government to review and amend the law, particularly with regard to the heavy penalties on peaceful protesters.

It also stresses that the right to demonstrate is absolute and guaranteed to all by notification and not by permission after the adoption of the new Egyptian constitution. In accordance with the provisions of the Court of Cassation and the provisions of the law, the Court of Cassation ruled that if the law contradicts with the Constitution, the provisions of the Constitution must be adhered to in addition to the other principle that the subsequent text copies the previous text when it was equal to or higher than its level.

In order to do so, the Egyptian Court of Cassation ruled that the existence of the law should be verified if it was not explicitly written in the constitution and in order to exercise its authority, the Constitution should be self-executing without the need to enact minimum legislation. In that case, it was necessary to implement the constitutional text from the day it was introduced and the rule of law that violates this case is implicitly copied by force of law.

Moreover, if the constitution guarantees a certain right and gives the law the right to regulate the use of this right, the non-issuance of this law does not preclude the implementation of the constitution's text on its guarantee. Therefore, Article 73 of the Egyptian Constitution became enforceable and the provisions of the Law of protest on the procedures regulating the right to organize demonstrations were repealed.

For his part, Dr. Hafez Abu Saeda, the organization's president, stressed that the right to peaceful assembly is one of the most fundamental human rights guaranteed by international human rights instruments and conventions, which allowed everyone to express their opinions freely away from the use of violence or threaten the nation's capabilities and express its opinion in accordance with the rules of the law.

He also emphasized on the need to amend the law of protest in order to allow the freedom of demonstration and peaceful assembly in accordance with article 73 of the Constitution of 2014 and the international conventions on human rights.

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