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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Redefining terrorism under the Mubarak regime: towards a new definition of terrorism in Egypt
Author:Chiha, Islam Ibrahim
Periodical:The Comparative and International Law Journal of Southern Africa (ISSN 0010-4051)
Geographic term:Egypt
human rights
international law
Abstract:In the fight against terrorism, many States have overreacted to its threat and have adopted overbroad definitions of terrorism that forfeited fundamental rights in the name of protecting national security. Egypt, under President Mubarak's regime, was one of those States that have exceedingly abused its terrorism definition to restrain many Egyptians' fundamental rights and freedoms. This article provides a comprehensive analysis of the Egyptian approach by highlighting the various deficiencies in the Egyptian definition of terrorism. Moreover, the paper underscores the harmful implication that such an ambiguous and vague definition may pose for the legal system and emphasizes how easily this definition lends itself to manipulation by unscrupulous political regimes. The article compares the Egyptian definition of terrorism to a number of international law definitions and underscores the various dissimilarities between them in the light of international law norms and standards for defining terrorism. It is further claimed that there are core elements of an objective definition that can be distilled from the various international definitions in order to prevent any potential abuse of power or undue interference with fundamental rights and freedoms. The article concludes with legal recommendations derived from the analysis of international law approaches for the prospective Egyptian legislator to consider when amending the anti-terrorism law of Egypt. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]