Sisi supporters suggest ‘on-line military’ to counter Brotherhood

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Dec 23, 2020

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The editor-in-chief of al-Dustour newspaper, Mohamed el-Baz, has referred to as for Egyptians to take motion on-line to defend the state towards assaults on social media.

On the Dec. 13 “Akher Al-Nahar” present on Al-Nahar, Baz stated that because the 10th anniversary of the January 25 Revolution approaches, supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood are criticizing the revolution and the regime and calling for demonstrations. The Brotherhood is assessed as a terror group in Egypt.

“The people must counter the wide-scale social media attacks on Egypt,” he stated, indicating that each time President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi speaks a couple of mission, the Muslim Brotherhood’s supporters downplay its influence, and when the press stories in regards to the state’s achievements, they declare the information is exaggerated.

He went on, “The Brotherhood’s supporters hurl so many insults at every defender of the state, and these insults make some people afraid of talking about the achievements.”

Baz defined that whereas the Egyptian armed forces shield the state’s borders, the “online army” will shield it electronically. “If you are walking by a new project that is under construction or a new road, take a photo of that and post it on your page,” he advised. 

The Information and Decision Support Center, the Council of Ministers’ advisory board, has labored over the previous 4 years to discredit what it phrases on-line rumors that tarnish the Egyptian state’s picture.

Baz’ name to motion is a part of a wider development. Last 12 months, members of parliament spoke out towards what they referred to as rumors towards the state and its establishments unfold by the Brotherhood. There was speak of a invoice to punish the sharers and a hotline to report offending social media accounts.

Suleiman Wahdan and a few 10% of the remainder of the parliament submitted such a invoice in November 2019 to the parliamentary Constitutional and Legislative Affairs Committee. Wahdan wrote, “Rumors have become a threat to Egypt’s national security, seeking to tarnish the image of the state and instill fear in the community. Rumors target the state’s important institutions, symbols and matters of vital interest to the Egyptian citizens [such as] the community’s security and stability and the state’s survival. Social media has become a tool that is affecting the community’s cohesion, and subsequently Egypt’s national security.” Wahdan added that “rumors” have turn into a instrument of “fashionable wars.”

The invoice stipulates that any individual proven to be behind creating, selling, mobilizing or spreading such info shall be sentenced to imprisonment of six months to 3 years and a fantastic between 10,000 and 100,000 Egyptian kilos ($638-$6,383). The penalty doubles if the data ends in dying or damage.

Suleiman Fadl al-Omairi, a member of parliament for the Matrouh governorate, proposed in March 2019 organising a hotline to report the social media pages that flow into what he referred to as rumors and lies with the intention of deceptive the general public, stirring discord and confusion and undermining safety and stability.

Sisi is paying nice consideration to the matter. In a speech at a army commencement ceremony on July 22, 2018, Sisi stated that the Egyptian authorities had detected “21,000 rumors” unfold in three months to trigger chaos, instability and despair among the many Egyptian individuals.

Sisi went on, “The real danger is blowing up countries from within. Rumors, acts of terrorism, loss of hope and feelings of frustration, all these work in a grand network aimed at one objective, only one objective, and that is to move people to destroy their country.”

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In June of that 12 months, Egypt handed a cybercrime legislation criminalizing cyberattacks on emails, web sites and social media accounts as well as to id theft.

The legislation additionally forbids the publication of info on actions by the military or police in delicate operations and the promotion of the concepts of terrorist organizations. The legislation consists of fines for the theft and hacking of emails and grants the authorities the best to dam websites if there may be proof that their content material poses a menace to nationwide safety or endanger the nation’s nationwide safety or economic system.

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Some expressed reservations and objected to the legislation, saying that it violates web freedom, because it grants the authorities the best to “inspect and access computer programs, databases and other devices” and drive service suppliers handy over consumer knowledge.

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