Egypt’s western allies have been urged to denounce the country’s “farcical” presidential election, after authorities detained a top anti-corruption official and the former running mate of a challenger to President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi. Fourteen international and Egyptian rights groups, including Human Rights Watch and the International Commission of Jurists, condemned the forthcoming March presidential elections, accusing the Sisi government of having “trampled over even the minimum requirements for free and fair elections” in his bid for a second term.
They released a statement demanding the US, EU and individual European states allied to Egypt “should speak out publicly now to denounce these farcical elections, rather than continue with largely unquestioning support for a government presiding over the country’s worst human rights crisis in decades”.
The NGOs condemned the election on the same day that Egypt’s former top auditor Hisham Geneina was seized at his home in New Cairo by police, according to his lawyer, Ali Taha.
Geneina had run the short-lived election campaign of former military chief of staff Sami Anan, who was detained last month and accused by the army of running for office without permission, bringing his presidential bid to a halt.