Hertfordshire MEP visits Egypt’s Tahrir Square as part of EU delegation
WITH British forces in action in Libya, a Hertfordshire Euro MP flew in to neighbouring Egypt, to join efforts to support the pro-democracy ‘Arab spring’.
MEP Richard Howitt took part in a cross-parliamentary EU observer mission for a referendum to enable fully democratic elections in Egypt, and to gauge reaction to the UN-mandated military action just across the border.
The Labour politician visited continuing democratic protests in Cairo’s Tahrir Square – the focal point of the revolution.
He also met the controversial Islamist Muslim Brotherhood who some fear could turn Egypt in to an extreme fundamentalist state.
Mr Howitt said: “There was a palpable post-revolutionary spirit where the result of the referendum seemed less important than the experience for the Egyptian people to take part in the first genuinely democratic poll in their lifetime.”
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He added: “I was struck by how little sympathy there was for Colonel Gaddafi but, with one million Egyptians working in Libya and refugees fleeing across the border, I also have a genuine trepidation about what will come next.”
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