Human rights groups and activists in Egypt are accusing the government of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi for effecting a law that regulates the work of non-governmental organisations.
The measure restricts NGO activity to developmental and social work and introduces jail terms of up to five years for non-compliance.
The law also gives the government power over deciding who can establish an NGO and for what purpose.
Over 46,000 NGOs have been issued with notice to comply with the new order within a year or risk dissolution by the court.
The government has long accused the human rights groups of taking foreign funds to fuel chaos and several are facing investigation over their funding.
Egyptian rights activists say they face the worst crackdown in their history under Sisi, accusing him of erasing freedoms won in the 2011 Arab Spring uprising that ended Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year rule.
The law comes at a time when opposition and rights groups accuse the government of oppression.