Egyptian actors have sought support to rally against the former military chief and now President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi's proposal for constitutional changes that would enshrine military rule in the country.
In a meeting with U.S. lawmakers in Washington on Monday, Khaled Abol Naga and Amr Waked decried the human rights situation in Egypt, while urging international solidarity with Egyptians currently living under military rule. The two actors are among the most vocal celebrities in support of the 2011 revolution that ended the 30-year rule of former President Hosni Mubarak and are widely known for their criticism of el-Sissi's government.
Egypt under el-Sissi has waged a massive crackdown on dissent in recent years, imprisoning thousands of people and silencing almost all dissenting voices. President el-Sissi ousted the country's first democratically elected President Mohamed Morsi in a coup. Since 2015, the number of executions in Egypt has surged to an unprecedented level, according to rights activists that are concerned that more innocent Egyptians, many of them members of the Muslim Brotherhood, will be subjected to unfair executions. Egypt's recent executions of nine Muslim Brotherhood members have led to international condemnation from rights groups. However, Western governments chose to remain silent in the face of unfair trials amid allegations that the Egyptian authorities used torture to obtain confessions.