Calls for pro-Sisi Europeans to support Germany visit

Calls for pro-Sisi Europeans to support Germany visit
Sisi's German fans have been urged to rally in support of the Egyptian president on his trip to Berlin.
2 min read
02 June, 2015
Anti-Sisi protesters demonstrated against the visit in Berlin last month [Anadolu]
Attempts are being made to organise a large rally in the German capital, Berlin, in support of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi's visit to the European country, which began on Tuesday.

The attempt to rally support is aimed at heading off opponents of Sisi, who are planning to protest against the visit.

Sisi is set to meet German chancellor Angela Merkel for talks on Wednesday, the day after an Egyptian court delayed approving the death sentence hanging over Mohamed Morsi, the elected leader deposed by Sisi in July 2013.

Sisi's opponents in Germany are attempting to pressure local authorities, calling the German government's dealings with Egypt too narrowly focused on economic matters, ignoring the political repression ongoing in the country.

Some German civil society organisations have backed their call.

The "Egyptian-German coalition to support democracy", founded in December 2013, is planning a protest in Berlin.

The coalition organised a protest last week in front of the Egyptian consulate in Frankfurt, and erected symbolic gallows to denounce "the execution of innocent people and rejection of the visit".

The past two days have seen similar moves, as a protest was held in front of the Egyptian embassy - during which demonstrators shouted slogans condemning "the commander of the military coup and the politicised death sentences".

Christian Mir, the executive director of Reporters Without Borders, called on Egyptian authorities to release journalists sentenced to life imprisonment. "The criminalisation of journalists in Egypt has exceeded all limits," since Sisi took power, he said.

On the second day of his visit, Sisi will deliver a speech at the closing session of the Egyptian-German Economic Forum held in Berlin, in which a number of German and Egyptian dignitaries and businessmen will participate.

He is also set to meet with a number of CEOs of major German companies.

This is an edited translation from our Arabic edition.