Absence of Egyptian parliament led to suspension in IPU, Sec-Gen
Shura Council - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO: The Inter-Parliamentary Union’s (IPU) suspension of Egypt’s membership was an administrative decision due to the absence of Egyptian parliament, said Secretary General of the IPU Anders B. Johnsson Friday.

In an interview conducted on March 17 and broadcasted Friday on ONTV, Johnsson added that the union is looking forward to a new parliament in Egypt in order to rejoin the union once again.

The Inter-Parliamentary Union decided on October 10, 2013, during its 129th conference held in Geneva, to suspend Egypt’s membership due to the absence of active legislative institutions at the time, after the Shura Council was dissolved in July 2013.

With regards to the alleged contradiction between the union’s announcement of support for Egypt’s demands for democracy, while suspending the country’s membership, Johnsson stated, “That’s very simple, the IPU, like everybody, was happy to see what happened in Egypt in 2011,” but it was worried as the constitution did not represent and defend the rights of all Egyptians.

He continued that the union sees the events of June 30 as a second revolution that reflected the people’s general sentiment, as the country was not on the right path.

If Egypt has witnessed two constitutions and two revolutions, this indicates that what people want for Egypt is a regime that allows them to participate in managing the government, indicating that they are seeking democracy, Johnsson commented.

Evaluating the performance of the 2010 and 2012 parliaments in Egypt, Johnson explained that the first did not represent all segments of the society. He further said that while the second parliament, which was elected after the revolution, enjoyed a wide participation by different political powers, the parliamentarians were not different from the formers ones as the majority of them did not enter into dialogue with the people.

Both parliaments shared the same philosophy, added Johnsson, explaining that there once they win the seats there is no follow-through with their promises.

He added that what Egypt currently requires is a parliament that represents all segments, as all parliaments should, stating that the parliament needs to come up with common solutions for the people.

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