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Egypt launches first round of national dialogue

May 4, 2023 at 1:12 pm

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi [Milos Miskov/Anadolu Agency]

Egypt yesterday launched a national political dialogue that authorities said was meant to generate debate around the country’s future, though the chair of the event said several areas of discussion would be off limits, Reuters reported.

The dialogue, announced by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi in April 2022, aims to produce political, economic and social reform recommendations that could be presented for Al-Sisi’s consideration.

MENA, Egypt’s national news agency, said the opening session of the national dialogue kicked off in the presence of Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly with the participation from all “political forces and sectors of society”.

The preparatory stage for the national dialogue lasted a full year, “in order to put in place a structure that accommodates all the participating forces, over the course of 23 meetings,” it was reported.

The national dialogue’s board of trustees includes 19 members including some from the opposition and independents. However no members of the Muslim Brotherhood were allowed to join.

Last month, the board said 1,400 prisoners of conscience had been released since the board’s formation a year ago.

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