#Egypt: Amnesty International wary of Military

President Morsi toppled by the military
President Morsi toppled by the military
Amnesty International has cautioned the Egyptian military against abuse of human rights and has asked the Army to exercise restraint hours after the military command removed President Morsi from office.

Flanked by political and religious leaders and top generals, General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi announced the removal of Morsi, suspension of the Egyptian constitution and a roadmap for a return to democratic rule.

The president of the supreme constitutional court will act as interim head of state, assisted by an interim council and a technocratic government until new presidential and parliamentary elections are held.

“There has already been a blow to freedom of expression, with several TV channels which supported the President silenced and staff reportedly arrested immediately after his overthrow.

Amid fears of possible reprisals and revenge attacks against supporters of President Morsi, along with the worrying trend of mob violence and sexual assaults on women this is a time for extreme caution,”said Salil Shetty, General Secretary of Amnesty International.

The armed forces and the police in Egypt have a well documented record of human rights violations which must not be repeated. The army stated that it will deal with any acts of violence with the “utmost force and determination”.

Amnesty international currently has observers in Egypt and is monitoring the situation.

“In this time of great tension and with the constitution suspended, it is more important than ever that the military comply with Egypt’s obligations under international human rights law,” said Shetty.

“No one should be punished for the peaceful exercise of the rights to freedom of expression, association or assembly. Anyone taken into detention should be charged promptly with a recognisable criminal offence, or released.And security forces should refrain from using unnecessary and excessive force,” said Shetty.