UN: Detention of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood leaders worrying

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Navi Pillay

The UN Human Rights Office (OHCHR) has expressed concern over the reported widespread detention of leading members of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said the new interim authorities in Egypt must quickly re-establish the rule of law and a system of government that respects the human rights of all Egyptians.

She appealed for an end to violence, arbitrary detention and illegal acts of retribution adding that serious steps should also be taken to halt, and investigate, the appalling — and at times seemingly organized — sexual violence targeting women protesters.

The High Commissioner expressed support for all Egyptians striving for a state that would safeguard their human rights and freedoms, and guarantee respect for rule of law.

Rupert Colville is the spokesperson for the UN Human Rights Office.

"The High Commissioner is also emphasizing that internationally recognized human rights and freedoms, including freedoms of speech and assembly, need to be upheld during this delicate period. She is urging all parts of Egyptian society to exercise these rights in a peaceful manner, so as to avoid any further loss of life. She is also urging a major effort by all political parties, and the authorities, to deter and punish any acts of vengeance. We are closely following the rapidly evolving situation in Egypt. The high commissioner calls on the interim authorities, and all political parties and social groups, to respond to the expectations of the Egyptian people through the initiation of a meaningful and truly inclusive dialogue, involving all parts of society, in order to achieve reconciliation and reinforce democratic principles and the rule of law, under civilian authorities." 

The High Commissioner urged Egyptians to seize this new opportunity to fulfill the country's potential to become a fully functioning and prosperous democracy, without further destabilizing upheavals.

Patrick Maigua, United Nations Radio, Geneva.

Duration 1:49″

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