National Initiative to Rebuild the Police Force... A Police for the People of Egypt

Press Release

13 July 2011

It is impossible to ignore the significance of the day on which Egypt's revolution started – the 25th January, the day on which the country used to celebrate National Police Day. It is also impossible to ignore the significance of the 28th January, when the dynamism of the revolution forced the defeated police force out of the conflict. That was a sign of the beginning of the end of the system, for its tyrannical hand had been cut off.

This significance was based on a dark historical legacy, in which the police in Egypt have long been associated with the regime in a malign relationship. Most citizens are convinced that the security forces in Egypt work in the service of the system and not in the service of society and its citizens.

Perhaps the ongoing absence of security, several months after the revolution, is proof of the dysfunction of the Egyptian police; a dysfunction which prevents it from operating in these new conditions, governed by the rule of law and respect for human rights. This shows there is a grave danger to the revolution if the Interior Ministry continues in its current form. Limited reforms are not enough; what is necessary instead is a complete overhaul of the Ministry that will change its image, its functions, and the very philosophy of its work in society.

Several months after the revolution, therefore, the country still suffers both from a lack of security and from a continuation of the same repressive security practices. In light of this situation, a group of citizens and civil human rights organisations have formed a working group to prepare an initiative to deal with the lack of security and to rebuild the police force.

The group started its work based on the working paper entitled 'Special Procedures to Reorganise the Interior Ministry', which was presented by former police officer Dr. Mohamed Mahfouz and submitted to the First Egypt Conference held on the 7th May 2011. Over the course of many meetings, interviews, and work sessions, the group discussed and developed the paper as a basis for the preparation of a comprehensive initiative to restore security and rebuild the police force, framed by the principles of the rule of law and respect for human rights.

The Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights hereby publishes the 'National Initiative to Rebuild the Police Force – A Police for the People of Egypt'. It calls upon all citizens, social groups, and state agencies to engage with this vision through contributing their opinions and comments, with a view to the participation of all in realising this vision, thus achieving the objectives of our revolution.

You can contact the National Initiative to Rebuild the Police Force by email: