Attendees halt women’s status lecture to protest National Council for Women

Dozens of attendees halted a public lecture on the status of Egyptian women late Monday, shouting against the chairwoman of the National Council for Women, who was not in attendance.

The attendees said they "felt insulted" when they came to attend the lecture at the Cultural Salon of the Cairo Opera House while council Chairwoman Mervat al-Telawy was absent.

Organizers failed to stop the audience members from chanting slogans against the council’s chairwoman.

A large number of the attendees belong to the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party. Manal Abul Hassan, the FJP women’s committee chairwoman, was among the speakers.

In February, the FJP criticized the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces' new formation of the women's council, arguing that it comprised several figures linked to the regime of former President Hosni Mubarak and that the council helped undermine Egyptian families.

The Freedom and Justice Party's website said in a report in the same month that the new council does not include representatives from Islamist strands of thought.

The council was established under the Mubarak regime in 2000 and chaired by Suzanne Mubarak, the wife of Egypt’s ousted president.

The FJP report further accused the council of implementing a number of “notorious” laws that have spoiled family and social life in Egypt.

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