The abuses of Egypt’s police under President Mohamed Morsy’s administration are increasingly attracting international attention. In the course of a single week of protests marking the second anniversary of the revolution, some 50 people were killed and hundreds more injured in street battles between the police and Egyptian citizens. In a statement on the violence, Amnesty International noted that eyewitness accounts “point to the unnecessary use of lethal force by security forces during a weekend of clashes with demonstrators.”
And as for the new constitution drawn up exclusively by the Muslim Brotherhood and its Salafi-jihadi allies, it has proved to be potentially even more authoritarian than the 1971 constitution under which Mubarak consolidated his rule. Maintaining the previous constitution’s bizarre penchant for rendering basic rights and civil liberties subject to the stipulations of a profoundly anti-democratic legal code, the new constitution subjects them as well to the unstated “principles of Islamic law,” as elaborated by the collectivity of acknowledged Sunni jurists — most of whom lived and delivered their rulings during the Middle Ages.
Two additional twists to the new, “democratic” constitution potentially establish an Iran-style, if Sunni, theocracy. Prominent Salafi leaders have interpreted the constitution as allowing judges to refer directly to Islamic law in passing sentences — cutting the hands of thieves, stoning adulterers, and the like — without having recourse to specific penalties stipulated by the legal code.(…)”