Tahrir Lounge – A meeting place for Egyptian civil society
In the Goethe-Institut Cairo – right next to Tahrir Square – a forum is available to those who played a significant role in setting Egypt’s democratic change in motion. It is a place for them to discuss their positions on Egypt’s future. Bloggers, human rights activists, and all those who want to work towards building a democratic state founded on the rule of law meet for working groups whose content is to be developed by Egyptian civil society. The Goethe-Institut is making the space available and the German Government is funding the furnishings and operating costs.
Today (7 April) the Goethe-Insitut Cairo is opening the so-called “Tahrir-Lounge” on its premises. In the heart of Cairo, a forum is available to those who played a significant role in setting the democratic change in motion for them to discuss their positions on Egypt’s future. Activists of all kinds from NGOs to human rights groups to bloggers have an additional possibility to take part in Egypt’s current transformation process.
The German Government is supporting the operation of the “Tahrir-Lounge” with 90,000 euro from the budgets of the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. The initial time plan for the project is one year.
The young Egyptian NGO “Center for Peace & Human Development” is coordinating the activities in the “Tahrir-Lounge”. Daily working groups on topics such as human rights, constitutional reform, the economy, and the welfare state are planned. Lectures and public discussions will also be held.
On behalf of the German Government, Federal Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle and Federal Development Minister Dirk Niebel offered a partnership for transformation after the revolution in Egypt. The goal is to support the building of structures for democracy and the rule of law, strengthen civil society, and promote economic and social progress as equal partners through concrete assistance. This is also the goal of the EU Partnership for Democracy and Shared Prosperity, which owes much to the input of the German Government. The project “Tahrir-Lounge” integrates itself into this approach.