New York

23 January 2014

Statement Attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General on Egypt

As Egyptians mark the third anniversary of their revolution, the Secretary-General encourages them to renew their commitment to peaceful dialogue and non-violence. He reiterates the commitment of the United Nations to support Egypt in building the future for all Egyptians with dignity, freedom, responsible governance and development that inspired the uprising of 2011.

The Secretary-General believes that one of the central challenges moving forward is pluralism: the guarantee that all voices are heard, represented and have a stake in the system, regardless of political or religious affiliation. Acknowledging the adoption of a new constitution, the Secretary-General underlines the crucial need to guarantee the political space on which a stable and inclusive democracy can be built.

The Secretary-General encourages Egyptians to rediscover common ground. In his view, credible parliamentary and presidential elections in a free and open atmosphere are crucial steps ahead in the transition. The “National Independent Committee for fact finding and gathering information and evidence surrounding the 30 June revolution and following events, and documenting them” can be an opportunity to combat impunity and to ensure effective investigation and prosecution of those responsible for serious violations of international law. Protection of human rights - and the rights and participation of women, in particular – is an essential foundation for the future. Political parties must commit themselves to non-violence.

Revolutions and political transitions are complex phenomena that can take years to play out. A peaceful and democratic Egypt is what the people of Egypt deserve and is critical for the entire North Africa, Middle East region and beyond.