Egypt’s Constitutional Test: Averting the March toward Islamic Fundamentalism

Hany Besada
Senior Researcher

After gaining overwhelming support in a March 2007 national 

referendum, long-time Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak introduced 

new constitutional amendments that effectively give more

power to the president and loosen controls on security forces.
Mubarak’s amendments constitute the latest move in a set of

orchestrated plans not only to entrench the stronghold of his own 

National Democratic Party and pave the way for his son as his 

successor but also to curb the power and ambition of his greatest 

opposition – the Muslim Brotherhood. As he steps into his fifth 

consecutive six-year term in office, Mubarak and his regime are 

being met with harsh criticism as opposition groups, human rights 

advocates, and Western governments urge for meaningful democratic 

reform in the country. But promoting democracy is a complex

issue in Egypt, and indeed in much of the Arab world.
Mubarak and other leaders face the Islamist Dilemma, where any 

move toward a more democracy-friendly political system threatens 

to empower Islamic militants and open the floodgates for nonsecular 

political parties.

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Filed Under: ArticlesEgyptFeaturedHamasMuslim BrotherhoodPalestineSyriaSyrian MB

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