An Arab human rights group lashed out Egypt, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Tunisia on Monday for gutting legal rights and relying upon military tribunals and special courts to prosecute citizens.
The annual report from the Arab Human Rights Organization denounced "the reduction in legal guarantees" since the September 11 attacks on the United States. It singled out Jordan in this regard.
In addition, the group slammed the use of military courts notably in "Egypt and Tunisia" in state security matters, as well as for a lack of "appropriate" judicial procedures.
The rights group termed as "very serious" the setting up of "extraordinary tribunals in certain countries", including Iraq, Libya and Syria.
Moreover, the group denounced a lack of political freedom in the countries, citing restrictions on new political parties in Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco, on associations in Syria, and complete bans in Libya, Iraq, and most Gulf countries except Kuwait and Bahrain.
The report also firmly criticized "reductions of public and press freedoms."
Conversely, the group praised efforts by some Arab governments to punish those found guilty of torturing suspects, notably Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia, AFP reported.
However, it said the practice was still widespread in Egypt, Tunisia and Iraq, where some prisoners are killed while in custody.
The rights group was founded 17 years ago by intellectuals from several Arab countries and established a headquarters in Cairo in the 1980s. (Albawaba.com)