In the wake of the recent uprising in Egypt, the Nelson Mandela Center for Peace and Conflict Resolution (NMCPCR) hosted a panel discussion titled “Winds of Change in the Arab World” on Friday, Feb. 11, 2011.
The speakers at the program were professor Qamar Agha, a journalist and a former professor in the Center for West Asian Studies, JMI; and Aftab K. Pasha, professor in the School of International Studies, JNU.
The speakers highlighted reasons such as poverty, joblessness of youths, freezing state of human rights and brutality of the regime for 30 years, which has trapped people in Egypt, reminding its citizen of the Pharaoh’s rule.
While both speakers had similar views on the repressive nature of the regime, Agha on the other hand also elaborated to explain that the army in the Arab region is trained to suppress people rather then to protect the nation. Citing the mounting international pressure on the Egyptian president, Hosni Mubarak, and the loosening of his stand to submit to the people of Egypt.
Agha opined that the stalled uprising can be halted and brought to an end if protesters — who are in the millions — are granted with Mubarak’s removal, civilian government, free and fair election and a constitution claiming superiority of civilians over the army.
Pasha cited the Jasmine revolution of Tunisia as the spark that ignited the protests in Egypt in the Tahrir square.
The program was hosted by professor Sujit Dutta in the NMCPCR.
Scenes From the Event