Overview of the United Nations Human Rights Council is seen in Geneva, Switzerland June 6, 2017. Picture taken with a fisheye lens. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse Overview of the United Nations Human Rights Council is seen in Geneva, Switzerland June 6, 2017. Picture taken with a fisheye lens. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

Egyptian activists urge enacting UN-supervised charter for human rights groups

Tue, Mar. 12, 2019
CAIRO - 12 March 2019: Sa'eed Abdel Hafez, chairman of the Forum for Development and Human Rights Dialog, emphasized that Egypt has faced a transitional period and is seeking political and economic stability.

He affirmed that this does not mean enabling any of the state institutions to abuse the basic human rights.

This came during a human rights seminar organized in Geneva by the Association of Female Lawyers, and the Forum for Development and Human Rights Dialog. The seminar was held in the headquarters of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, and was chaired by Rabha Fathi, president of the Association of Female Lawyers.

The seminar called for preparing an international charter for international human rights organizations to adhere to. The charter will address the rights and freedom situation in each country, in accordance with the United Nations' rules and standards. It urged the UN to supervise the preparation process of this charter.

Abdel Hafez said that some organizations have not yet rid themselves of their political reference, and are still working to serve political interests at the expense of ensuring citizens' enjoyment of their rights.

He added that such organizations are defending Qatar while it issues false allegations against the four states boycotting it. He called on these rights groups to seek objectivity in order to preserve their remaining share of credibility.

Abdel Hafez called on Egyptian human rights groups to hold a dialogue with each other, with a human rights background, and to stop acting according to political references.

Abdel Hafez stressed that Egypt has problems related to the human rights situation, adding that these problems are, however, not systematic as some organizations claim. He said that it is not true that the perpetrators of human rights violations are immune to punishment.

Magdi Helmy, managing editor of Cairo-based Al-Wafd Gate, said that human rights cannot be separated, explaining that civil and political rights are integrated with economic and social rights.

The elected African leaders called on the European leaders at the first African-European summit to submit an official report on the period of colonization, and to compensate countries which had been occupied, Helmy said.

Helmy underscored people's health right,referring to Egypt's "100 Million Seha (Healthy lives)national campaign, which aims to eliminate hepatitis. He also referred to the cooperation between non-governmental organizations and important hospitals in Egypt to serve the poor for free.

Helmy also pointed out to the right of housing, which he says has been achieved through the provision of housing units for young people at competitive prices, and the development of slums.
 
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