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AFP
November 22, 2020

Egypt hits back at critics of rights group arrests

World

AFP
November 22, 2020

CAIRO: Egypt’s foreign ministry on Saturday dismissed the international criticism of its arrests of three staff members of a leading human rights group.

Ahmed Hafez, the ministry’s spokesman, "rejects any attempt to affect the investigations conducted by the public prosecution with Egyptian citizens who have charges levelled against them", the ministry said in a statement. Hafez said "national sovereignty must be respected as well as not meddling in domestic affairs".

Several European countries, the United States and United Nations have condemned the detention this week of members of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR).

The ministry said it was reacting to "false conclusions drawn in news coverage and on social media platforms".

The staffers, Mohamed Basheer, Karim Ennara and Gasser Abdel-Razek, have been detained on charges including "joining a terror group" and "spreading false news", it said.