Egyptian Authorities Clamp Down on Dissent

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Middle East Watch is concerned that the Egyptian government is using its emergency law and other measures to stifle emerging domestic dissent against the Gulf War. In a letter to President Hosni Mubarak dated February 11, Middle East Watch said that a recent wave of arrests and administrative detentions, coupled with military court proceedings against journalists, raise "the inevitable suspicion that the Egyptian authorities may be using detention powers under the emergency law to curtail the freedom of expression of those who are raising their voices in dissent against prevailing government policy." Egyptian human rights lawyers estimate that as many as 200 political activists and students may have been detained since a crackdown began on February 7.

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