Protests against Egypt's President el-Sisi
According to Arab human rights organisations Egyptian security forces have arrested more than 1,000 people after the protests against President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi on the weekend - including prominent opposition figures, academics and authors. The protests were triggered by accusations of corruption against the president. Not all commentators see the protests as justified.
Egyptians wrong to demonise el-Sisi
The protests in Egypt are not entirely justified, finds news.bg:
“Many of Egypt's problems are chronic; al-Sisi inherited them from his predecessors. In a country characterised by a controlled economy and rampant bureaucracy, where reforms are the exception rather than the rule, El-Sisi is trying to implement a stringent austerity policy in a bid to reduce the heavy subsidisation of consumer goods. In Egypt, about 20 percent of the price of food staples such as bread, rice and sugar is paid from the state budget. ... On the one hand El-Sisi's budget cuts, which the IMF and others called for, are fuelling discontent among the Egyptians. On the other hand it is precisely because of the cuts that unemployment and inflation have fallen below ten percent for the first time in many years.”
One dictator after another
There can be no hope of the country being democratised until the citizens take matters into their own hands, Sözcü writes:
“There are countries in which there's a coup and then a counter-coup, and so on. ... Egypt is one of these countries. ... El-Sisi doesn't have the support of the people. The chair of Trump's beloved dictator is wobbling! The US, the EU and Israel may now switch allegiance in Egypt. But until the people wake up from their slumber one dictator will go only to be replaced by another.”