Egypt’s National Dialogue to kick off Wednesday, with no red lines: Diaa Rashwan

Daily News Egypt
7 Min Read

Diaa Rashwan, General Coordinator of the National Dialogue, has announced that the National Dialogue will start next Wednesday, indicating that all parties to the National Dialogue have cooperated over the past year, and this confirms the mutual trust between all participants in the process, pointing out that there will be no red lines in the discussions. 

Rashwan said that the Dialogue’s Board of Trustees includes 19 members representing the Egyptian society in addition to the head of the technical secretariat and the general coordinator.

He added: “The Board of Trustees set a legal precedent, as it formed itself, and not through another party, and stopped voting in all issues of dialogue, that is, if there are two opinions, it will never vote or exclude any of the two opinions. The council will report directly to the President of the Republic. When the council agreed that the next general elections in Egypt, whether presidential, parliamentary, local, or referendums, should all be under judicial supervision, and that this requires an amendment to the law of the National Elections Authority, it was sent to the President of the Republic, and he said on his social media account (Facebook) that he valued this proposal and promised to adopt it.”

He noted that one year ago, President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi called for the national dialogue. There are some questions from many sincere people about the reason for the delay in the national dialogue. Rashwan explained that any dialogue process takes several different forms whether working sessions, negotiations, or conferences. When President Al-Sisi launched the dialogue, everyone realized that its first and main goal was to open channels of communication, pointing out that there were circumstances that led to the lack of communication between those who differ in opinion inside Egypt for years, in various sectors and fields, and there was no case of dialogue fluidity.

Rashwan continued: “Bridges and channels of communication had to be opened. During the past year, the level of communication was unprecedented. It was the year of building confidence between the parties to the dialogue, and these political parties represent many sides in Egypt, including the opposition.”

He noted that what happened during the past year is that the National Dialogue Council called on all social, trade unions, and other forces to hold sessions with citizens in different regions to listen to their opinions and complaints.

The General Coordinator of the National Dialogue noted that during the past year, hundreds of meetings, consultations and discussions took place, and the dialogue witnessed ups and downs, and this was natural, however, the level of communication was the highest we can imagine from all parties related to the national dialogue.

Rashwan explained that all parties to the national dialogue have been cooperating over the past year, and this matter is very important to confirm respect, appreciation and mutual trust, and trust until this moment has reached a high enough rate to start deliberating on the dialogue.

Rashwan pointed out that until this moment, no political or partisan force has issued a statement about refusing to participate in the dialogue, and everyone is in a state of true consensus. Even some forces that deviate from the legitimacy of the constitution and rule in Egypt have tried to express their desire.

He stressed that the technical secretariat of the dialogue received tens of thousands of names and proposals until the last moment, and what happened in the year was a dialogue between all parties and bridges of trust between all and removing the fog that sometimes hung over the relations of the parties, and at the same time the Board of Trustees was continuing its organizational and structural work, and excluded what kind of imbalance and the Board of Trustees formed 3 major axes “economic, political and societal”, and each axe was divided into a number of committees until they all reached 19 committees, and not a single complaint occurred from any party that it is not present in a state of balance in managing the national dialogue either from the Board of Trustees or the rapporteurs and assistants.

The General Coordinator of the National Dialogue explained that the reason behind receiving thousands of names is the presence of more than 19 committees discussing more than 113 issues, and each issue has representatives from all national parties and segments, so that the national dialogue achieves its purpose.

He stressed that the Board of Trustees held its last session No. 23 two days ago and decided that there will be an opening to start the dialogue, pointing out that the opening must be appropriate for the national dialogue and its advocate and its parties, and also made a decision that all sessions are public and Egyptian and international media will attend the sessions.

He stated that the Board of Trustees ruled out 3 issues, namely (amending the constitution, national security, and foreign policy).

The General Coordinator of the National Dialogue thanked everyone who took the initiative to announce his desire to participate in the dialogue, and everyone who contributed to the success of the National Dialogue.

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