On the attitude of Egyptian authorities to forbid the preparatory meeting of the Mediterranean conference of the Left, Gregor Gysi, President of the European Left, declares:

On the attitude of Egyptian authorities to forbid the preparatory meeting of the Mediterranean conference of the Left, Gregor Gysi, President of the European Left, declares:

The decision of the Egyptian authorities not to have the preparatory group of the Mediterranean Conference of the Left in Cairo is absolutely incomprehensible and to be condemned. Egypt is in a difficult situation and the recent bloody attacks on the Sinai have further aggravated the security situation. However, this must not be a reason for further restrictions on democracy and freedom. The aim of the EL meeting with left-wing Arab parties was to discuss ways forward for democracy and peace in the region. The refusal by Egyptian security authorities once again makes clear the ever sharper authoritarian course in Egypt. Journalists and human rights activists are imprisoned, left-wing forces restricted in their work and their freedom of assembly. Preventing the preparatory meeting for the Mediterranean Conference of the Left to take place highlights the need for this conference.

We expect European countries such as France and Germany, which cooperate on many issues with the Egyptian government, to commit themselves to withdraw the ban on the preparatory meeting.