Egypt blasts UN chief over case of rights groups



Egypt has blasted the UN chief for calling for a fair trial for two prominent rights activists accused of illegally receiving foreign funds for their NGOs.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid says in a statement on Wednesday that comments by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon are an attempt to intimidate Egypt’s judiciary and meddle in its affairs.
A spokesman for Ban said in a statementthat he was “following closely” the government’s legal case against NGOs over the foreign funds issue and that the two activists — Gamal Eid and Hossam Bahgat — should “benefit from all due process and fair trial standards.”
President Abdel-Fattah El Sissi’s government has placed restrictions on civil rights groups at a time when criticism is growing of the country’s human rights record, particularly police abuse.

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