As Egypt lionizes police, activists worry

Accompanied by the army’s move back to the heart of government, it is worrying those Egyptians who fear a newly assertive security apparatus will try to knock a badly shaken democratic transition even further off course.

“It’s very troubling,” said Ahmed Maher, founder of the April 6 movement which helped to ignite the 2011 anti-Mubarak uprising fuelled by anger at police brutality. “They are trying to present the police as angels.”

Since Mursi was toppled on July 3, the police force has shown confidence not seen since Mubarak’s downfall.

Kitted out with new gear, it is being lauded as the hero of a new war against an old enemy: Islamist militancy…

While fear of the police appeared to have been smashed by the 2011 uprising, rights activists say there has been no real reform of the institution since Mubarak’s day. Both the army-led government that replaced him and the Mursi administration were faulted for failing to enact any reforms.