Mr President, Egyptians – old, young, men, and women – have spoken out clearly. They want to determine their own future: opportunities, no corruption. They demand justice and human rights to be respected. We support their calls for freedom and we are humble about the decisions that some of the European Member State governments have made in the past, but we are equally ambitious and committed to establishing a real partnership with Egypt in the future. But which Egypt?
I truly hope we can speak about a new Egypt, but I worry about the way in which the Supreme Council of the armed forces is showing the exact same characteristics as under Mubarak. More than 12 000 civilians have been tried before military courts since the revolution. This injustice must end. I stand with those Egyptians who believe military courts do not have legitimacy. This is also true according to Article 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Human rights defender and blogger Alaa Abdel Fatah is one of the latest victims. Tomorrow he will celebrate his birthday in a cramped prison cell. From prison, under awful circumstances, he awaits the charges brought against him, trumped-up charges. He also awaits the birth of his son. His wife is due to deliver a baby boy any day. They had faith in the birth of a new Egypt, an Egypt that would provide opportunities for the new generation. His son will be named Khaled after Khaled Saeed who was murdered by the police.
Alaa Abdel Fatah is a symbol and there are many other symbols that represent the thousands who are imprisoned including Maikel Nabil, another blogger who has been mentioned. The injustice goes on and we support the Egyptians’ peaceful call for a truly new Egypt. That must start with the end of military trials for civilians and the release of all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience.
I would like to ask whether we can get this resolution translated into Arabic as a matter of exception. I would also like to point out that the spelling of Mr Abdel Fatah’s name is incorrect and should be corrected.