Overview on: "No for Compulsory Military Service" Movement

>> 16 June 2010


- We are an Egyptian movement, established on Facebook in 9th of April 2009; Against the Egyptian laws of military service... We aim to abolish Compulsory draft and replace it by optional conscription.
- We also are aiming to reform the relation between citizens and military institution, ending any authorities of militarists on civilians, deepening the civil state, and evolving qualification, organization and standard liberties and rights in Egyptian army.
- Our movement is politically neutral... its' founders and members belong to several and bulk of political movements... and there’s no any political intention for this movement except exterminating compulsory military service.
- All the members of our movement are Egyptians, and we have lots of friends from many other countries, all of them act to abolish military service in their countries

Framework in Egypt:
- In 1952, Egypt faced a coup d’état by some contingent of army. Soldiers blockaded the royal palace and forced the king to leave Egypt. Then they canceled the Egyptian constitution of 1923, declared Egyptian republic, commandeered newspapers, and repealed political parties
Since that day and till now, Egypt is under military rule, Soldiers governing it one by one ... Till now, militarists still control everything in civilian life, and damn on miserable way anyone who dares and think of objecting the military government
- Egypt has a compulsory military service law, forces every Egyptian male (only males) to serve in the Egyptian army for a period from 1 to 3 years without any fees. And this period could extend more than that, if the conscript had a military trial in the army

Why do we refuse Compulsory Military Service?
1- Because it's just a shape of slavery. It takes away freedom of the citizens and forces them to do what they never wanted or choose
2- Because it's a forced labor system. It forces conscripts to work against their will and without charge
3- Because it's a violation of Individual freedom. We believe that every citizen is free to choose and decide everything belongs to him, and this of course includes his choice to join armed forces or not
4- Because it encroach civil state. It gives militarists authority on civilians and this contrary to principles of civil state
5- Because the concept of the armies around the world has evolved over time. And the best armies now are professional ones, not the forcibly conscripted armies

Our targets:
1- Abolishing compulsory military service and replacing it with optional recruitment
2- Ending all military authorities on civilians like (Military trials, Traveling permission, and military appointment in civilian sites)
3- Allowing the press to monitor military performance, exposing any corruption in the army (Repeal of the law of: prohibition of the dissemination of any information on the armed forces)
4- Guarantee conscripts right in Egyptian army, by all means and ways, to ensure their safety, dignity and freedom
5- Abolition of all types of racial discrimination within the military establishment (either on the basis of sex, religion, race, family status or any other reason)

Our Mechanisms:
1- Electronic Campaigns, especially on social networks, to convey the idea to the maximum percentage of Egyptian youth
2- Printed brochures, posters, and stickers, to disseminate and clarify the objectives of the movement
3- Holding seminars, lectures and workshops, in political parties, human rights organizations, in the different provinces to spread our ideas and train activists
4- Litigation in the Egyptian and international courts, to erase legitimacy of the current military service laws, and urge the parliament to draft a new law that respects individual freedoms
5- Political alliances, and political argument with stakeholder and all political movements
6- Provide international cover for the movement, to ensure communication between the opponents to compulsory recruitment in Egypt with their counterparts in other countries, to achieve mutual support, and to protect the Egyptian activists from the terrorism of the Egyptian government
7- Peaceful demonstrations, strikes and sit-ins. In public places, In front of parliament, International institutions and institutions of the army
8- Legislative and parliamentary pressure, by persuading lawmakers with the ideas of our movement, and to persuade them to submit an alternative law to the parliament for discussion

Legal aspect:
We see that compulsory military service law in Egypt is unconstitutional and loose legitimacy, for the following reasons:
1- Sex discrimination, because military service is compulsory for males, while females are exempted from it
2- Religion discrimination, since the law reduces the duration of service for the Holy Quran keepers
3- Military service restricts the right of citizens to travel, which undermine freedom of movement and the right of emigration, which had been endorsed by the constitution and international conventions
4- Military service law prohibits recruits and who didn't perform military service from possession of political rights, and this is contrary to the principles of equality among citizens
5- Constitution confirms that the army is the only institution which has the right to undertake the organization of military and paramilitary formations, while the police operates a paramilitary organization (central security), and forces recruits to join it
6- International covenants imposes on States to develop a legal system for the Conscientious Objection, while the Egyptian Regime doesn't respect these laws

Future of the movement:
When we achieve the objectives of the movement, it will automatically converted to a specialized organization in defending the rights of recruits and workers in Egyptian army

For more details, please visit our pages:

Translated by: Sahar Maher. Edited by me.


Update July 2013
The new pages of the movement
Site: http://www.nomilservice.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/No.Military.Service
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NoMilService


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