Egypt freezes assets of human rights defenders, NGOs

Renowned human rights activist Hossam Bahgat (C), seen here leaving a courtroom in Cairo in April, is one of five whose assets have been seized following a lengthy legal processAn Egyptian court froze assets of five prominent human rights defenders and three non-governmental organisations on Saturday, provoking fears of an intensified crackdown on civil society. European Union External Action Service criticised the decision in a statement. “The increased pressure on independent Egyptian civil society, in particular human rights organisations and defenders, is not in line with Egypt’s commitments to promote and respect human rights and fundamental freedoms as guaranteed by its Constitution,” the EU diplomatic service said.

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