Demonstration on Tahrir Square in the centre of Cairo on 1 February 2011

Political situation Changes in the division of powers and curbs on basic rights

In May 2014, Abdelfattah Al-Sisi was elected Egypt's president. Parliamentary elections were held in several stages between October and December 2015. The vast majority of the newly elected members of parliament are Al-Sisi supporters. In April 2018, he was confirmed in office for a further four years with just under 97 per cent of the vote.

In April 2019, a constitutional amendment that had been previously approved in a referendum entered into force. It retrospectively extends the term of office for the head of state to six years, allowing President Al-Sisi to continue ruling the country until 2030.

Human rights

The president's influence over the judiciary is also being expanded: he now has far-reaching powers to appoint high-level judicial officials as well as control over budget issues relating to the judiciary. The constitutional amendment also provides for a smaller parliament and the reintroduction of an upper house as a second chamber.

The rights to freedom of opinion, freedom of assembly and press freedom enshrined in the constitution have been increasingly restricted since 2014. A state of emergency has been continuously in force in Egypt since April 2017.

The Egyptian government has justified the crackdown on fundamental rights by citing the threat posed by terrorism within Egypt itself, the tense foreign policy situation in the region and the clashes between the military and terrorist groups on the Sinai peninsula.

Corruption

On the Corruption Perceptions Index compiled by the non-governmental organisation Transparency International, Egypt ranked 106th out of the 180 countries evaluated in 2019. Corruption continues to affect many aspects of people's daily lives, for instance when they want to use the services provided by public authorities or when they need medical treatment.