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Media reports alleging that civil society groups are receiving foreign funding in a plot to destabilise the government could be a prelude to a crackdown on them, said Bersih co-chairperson Ambiga Sreenevasan.

Civil society groups have criticized the publication of the public benefits organization amendment bill that limits foreign funding for the groups at 15 per cent…the organizations say they will stage demonstrations and pursue judicial redress to reject a scheme they allege is aimed at punishing a section of civil society for their linkage to the international criminal court cases.

Two years after the Egyptian revolution, the Egyptian government is circulating draft proposals for a new NGO law that would suppress the fundamental freedoms necessary for the functioning of a healthy civil society. The draft proposals include bringing all NGOs and their funds under government control, subjecting their work to the approval of a committee that includes security services, and providing the Egyptian government access to all NGO documents.

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