ICNL Experts Discuss Egyptian NGO Crisis

Published: March 15, 2012

Working closely with local Egyptian partners the United Group and the Arab Program for Human Rights Activists, ICNL has been working to defend Egyptian civil society organizations from increasing attacks on their independence and ability to raise funds.

Discussing the recent raids on foreign NGOs in Egypt, ICNL Legal Advisor Kareem Elbayar told the Washington Post in mid-February: “There’s a broader chilling effect… Groups are now afraid to conduct their activities. A number of them have instructed staff to stay at home. The implications go far beyond political groups” that are the focus of the ongoing investigations.

More recently, ICNL responded to Egyptian Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Fayza Aboulnaga’s op-ed “Why Egypt Moved Against the NGOs,” calling her statement a “rhetorically clever” way to “disguise … the fundamental point that Egypt’s [NGO] policy violates international law.”

ICNL and our local partners are now working with a wide coalition of Egyptian civil society leaders, government officials, and members of parliament to engage in the ongoing process of amending Egypt’s Law on Associations and Foundations (Law 84 of 2002). Learn more about ICNL’s work in the region here.