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Egypt's Real State of Emergency

Author: Mohamed ElBaradei
December 27, 2010

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In an editorial for the Washington Post, Mohamed ElBaradei bashes the current state of affairs in Egypt, denouncing the corruption and "hodgepodge" of provisions that allows the ruling regime to retain its "iron grip" over the nation.

Egypt has recently held yet another fraudulent and farcical election. Ballot boxes were stuffed. Votes were bought. People who considered voting for the opposition were subjected to violence by professional thugs. And these transgressions have been well documented by human rights groups.

Democracy must mean more than merely going through the motions.

In theory, Egypt has a constitution and laws that reflect the will of its people. But in reality, the provisions are a hodgepodge that perpetuates the iron grip of the ruling regime. President Hosni Mubarak enjoys imperial powers. There is no legislative oversight of the military budget. No more than five people are permitted to assemble without permission to stage a peaceful demonstration. Universities have security forces on campus to ensure that students do not engage in political activities.

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