First Published: 2005-04-19

 
Egyptian academics join pro-reform protests
 

More than 100 Egyptian university professors protest against interference of security forces on campuses.

 

Middle East Online

Unprecedented waves of pro-reform demonstrations

CAIRO - More than 100 Egyptian university professors staged a rare protest Tuesday against the interference of security forces on campuses and in support of the country's growing reform movement.

The silent demonstration held at Cairo University was called by the "movement of March 9 for the independence of universities" founded three years ago by Egyptian professors.

"No to the meddling of security forces in universities," "Yes to free and independent universities," read some of the banners.

Demonstrators handed out a statement charging that "the security forces' interference in academic and student affairs is detrimental to the freedom of professors and students in the performance of their academic work."

They were joined by students from the Kefaya ("Enough") movement, which has been the leading voice for democratic reform and human rights in Egypt in recent months.

Egypt has witnessed an unprecedented string of rallies calling for political and economic reforms and the lifting of the state of emergency imposed in 1981 after the assassination of president Anwar Sadat.

"This is the first protest in 20 years aimed at ending the security forces' interference in the appointment of staff and in student elections," political science professor Dina al-Khawaja said.

"University professors cannot disregard the need for reforms in Egypt," she added.

"Professors here are also demonstrating in solidarity with Egyptian judges," said journalism professor Awatef Abdel Rahman, pointing to growing demands for the independence of the judiciary.

Judges have also threatened to abstain from supervising the September presidential elections unless their demands for reforms are met.

Earlier this year Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, who succeeded Sadat, announced that rival candidates will for the first time be able to stand in presidential polls.

Previously, voters were only given the opportunity to say yes or no in a referendum to a single candidate nominated by parliament, which is overwhelmingly dominated by Mubarak's ruling National Democratic Party.

 

Israel escalates merciless Gaza onslaught

Qatar emir in unannounced visit to Saudi

Is Tunisia returning to old regime censorship?

Libya government to hand over power to new parliament

Islamic State expands into tourism in Syria, Iraq

Assassination of famed Somali musician and lawmaker

Sisi defends Egypt in trying to broker Gaza truce

Syria welcomes nomination of Staffan de Mistura as new UN envoy

Iraq lawmakers stall presidential election as violence yields grim crop of bodies

Yemen president calls for unity

Etihad helps Jet Airways return to profit

HRW: Iraq air strikes wreaking awful toll on civilians

Kuwait revokes pro-opposition TV, newspaper licences

Twin suicide bombing shakes Libya's Benghazi

Car bomb rips through Baghdad checkpoint

Turkey detains dozens of senior police officers for 'spying'

Saudi Arabia ousts head of Syria opposition government

Maliki meets Sunni tribal leaders in new bid to gain support

Israeli envoy: Our soldiers deserve a Nobel Peace Prize

Rights group denounces Kuwait's revocation of citizenship

Kerry again places onus on Hamas to accept ceasefire

Britain finds evidence of effort to Islamise state-run schools

Fiercest fighting in months hits Eastern Damascus

Iraq slams Jordan for hosting 'unacceptable' meeting of Sunni critics

Erdogan sacrifices Gaza mediation in favour of anti-Israel diatribes

Israel hits Al-Jazeera Gaza office

Syria oil industry suffers huge losses because of war

UN calls for help to vaccinate Syria toddlers against polio

Erdogan has stopped talking to Obama

Israel confirms kidnapped soldier is dead

South Sudan rebels pledge to pull troops out fails

Rouhani: More negotiations only solution for nuclear deal

Israel identify 12 soldiers killed over the weekend

UAE pledges $41 million aid for Gaza reconstruction

Security Council condemns persecution of Iraqi Christians

Islamists lose in Libya parliament elections

Deadly clashes erupt in Benghazi

27 Israeli soldiers killed in Gaza assault

One of world’s oldest monasteries falls into hands of jihadists in Iraq

Syria rebels expel jihadists from four areas in Damascus region

Kuwait revokes citizenship of owner of pro-opposition Al-Youm TV

Diplomacy intensifies to end weeks of deadly violence in Gaza

Turkey imposes curfew on Hakkari town after clashes

UAE slams Doha-based Al-Jazeera over fabricated Gaza news

Syria to Russia: Thanks for supporting our victory!