Thursday, May 01, 2008

Reuters Critical of "Official Foot-Dragging" in Egypt

An article authored by Cynthia Johnston, just published in Reuters, underscores the continuing struggle of the Baha'is of Egypt in their attempts to obtain their government-issued official documents.

It reports that, according to the human rights organization--Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR), "official foot-dragging means Egypt's Baha'i religious minority is still struggling to get identity papers, despite a landmark court ruling...."

The 29 January 2008 ruling allowed the Baha'is to obtain ID cards and birth certificates without having to lie about their true religious affiliation. The ruling fell short, though, of permitting the Baha'is to indicate their own religion on the required sections of these documents...instead, it allowed them to enter dashes "--" in the indicated fields. The Ministry of Interior accepted that solution without any challenge to the decision rendered by the court.

The Baha'is of Egypt, however, have not been able to obtain their official documents since the ruling. They remain without ID cards and birth certificates. No clear reason or explanation, regarding the delay, had ever been given to them.

Another ruling in favor of Christian converts in Egypt remains to be implemented. It allowed those who have returned to Christianity to indicate their true faith correctly on their ID documents.

EIPR, represented by Mr. Hossam Bahgat, expressed its great concern with such delays and has been actively pursuing all means to help propel the authorities to expedite the implementation of these new policies.


  1. Ah foot dragging, a highly effective way to keep from doing the right thing!

  2. I am sure you are quite familiar with that! ;-)

  3. My regards,

    And thanks for your detachment.

  4. Joao,
    Good to hear from you again.


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