The Arab Commission for Human Rights called on Egypt to join the Arab Charter on Human Rights adopted by the Arab League in 2004, Egyptian television EGYnews said on its website.
According to the head of commission, Dr. Abdul Raheem Al-Awadhi, Assistant Foreign Minister for Legal Affairs of UAE, Egypt should have signed the charter after the uprising in January 2011.
“Cairo has not yet started the ratification of the agreement, apparently because of the upheaval that followed the events of January 25 last year. But now, when the work of the state gets back to normal, it should be done,” Al-Awadhi said.
Now, when the Middle East and the North Africa are experiencing a surge of struggle for democracy and human rights, the activity of the commission should be intensified and its authority significantly expanded, he said.
“If Egypt signs the Charter, it will improve the credibility of the commission and will expand its powers. It will be useful for Egyptian and other Arab governmental and non-governmental organizations of human rights,” head of the commission said.
The Arab League has established a permanent Commission on Human Rights in 1968, but its power is restricted. In 2004, the Arab League adopted the Charter of Human Rights joined by seven countries (Jordan, Bahrain, Libya, Algeria, UAE, Syria and Palestine). The Charter came into force in 2008. At the moment the treaty is ratified by three states in the region: Yemen, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
The international relation to the Arab Charter for Human Rights is ambiguous. The UN, Amnesty International and other major human rights organizations have criticized the agreement for the Arab approach to the unequal rights of men and women and for upholding corporal punishment.