#Karim_Hamdythe lawyer was arrested February 22, on 23rd he was already tortured to death in Mataraiya police station. Karim was only 28 years old, married with two sweet little kids, who has now been deprived of their beloved husband & father in the most gruesome way.#WelcomeToEgypt : The land of State-sponsored Terrorism, Corruption, lies and massive Human Rights violations.
The Rape of Fatima… a new crime perpetrated by Egyptian security officials
11 March 2015
The incident of the rape of a young woman by police officers at Al-Marj Police Station has aroused anger on social networks. This came after the case was introduced to the public on Al-Sharq Satellite TV Channel by the director of the Victims Centre for Human Rights.
In his TV program entitled "Our Rights", Haitham Abu Khalil received a phone call from an 18-year-old rape victim called Fatima who provided a detailed account of what happened to her at Al-Marj Police Station. She accused police officer Mahmoud Al-Husseini of raping her, and two other policemen of shackling her.
Fatima said: "I was taken from my home at six in the evening of 30 January. I was beaten in front of my parents and they stole things from our home. I was taken to Al-Marj Police Station where I was tortured, electrified and then raped."
"Then I was transferred to Al-Matariyah Police Station where police officer Ahmad Yayha said: 'It is good you have not come to us pregnant'. He tortured me severely so as to divulge the names of young opposition members in Al-Matariyah," she explained.
"If you take to the streets because of petrol and bread, then you are not real men. Take to the streets to regain my right and the rights of all the detained girls. I would like to say to the officer who raped me: you did everything in order to prevent me from telling the truth, but I shall keep telling the truth until truth is victorious and I am able to exact my revenge on you."
Speaking to the same program, the brother of the victim said: "What can we do? Is this permitted or prohibited? An 18-year-old young woman is subjected to this! Where are our rights? Who should we report this to and against who? What else will they do? They are killing people everywhere. We are in a jungle."
The revelation lead to the hashtag #اغتصاب_فاطمة (The rape of Fatima) being used on Twitter. Asma' Al-Ghazali tweeted: "Should Fatima's brother, who is despairing for his sister, kill officer Al-Husseini who raped his sister and wanted other police officers to rape her .. would anyone blame him?"
Faridah Muhammad said: "In Egypt's prisons and police stations women, children and even men are being raped. Keep in mind that the dignity of the Egyptian citizen is a red line."
Muhammad Sharif wrote: "Fatima was raped by the dogs of the Interior Ministry because she took to the streets in defense of her freedom. Fatima is not the first case; there are many others like her. Are you still content with peacefulness?"
Amr Muhammad said: "Silence regarding previous incidents, while no girl had her right restored, is what led to the repeat of the same thing. The indifference and silence shown by all has regrettably made this very routine."
Ali Mustafa tweeted: "An incident like this is sufficient to mobilize entire nations and bring down regimes. Yet, a thousand incident of this sort will change nothing as far as those who have lost their religion, dignity and manhood are concerned."
Amir Ali wrote: "If you are not going to rise in defense of your honor, when will you rise?"
Ayman Mustafa said: "A state without law, a regime without legitimacy, a people without zeal. We deserve ISIS."
UN lists 3,200 children arrested in Egypt since 2013 coup
The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has said in a report that the arbitrary detention of minors by the Egyptian regime is "systematic and widespread." Rassd.compublished the findings of the report on Friday.
According to the working group, 3,200 children have been arrested since the end of June 2013, when the military carried out a coup against the first ever freely-elected Egyptian President, Mohamed Morsi. The UN claims that minors have been tortured inside state detention centres. Around 800 are still in prison, it reports, 200 of whom are in the Central Security Camp in Banha, north of Cairo.
"These minors are subject to ill treatment, including physical torture and sexual violence," the report points out. "They are prevented from having any visits."
The working group called on the Egyptian authorities to release all of the detained minors and compensate them proportionally for the harm they have suffered.
The report was produced following a complaint to the UN Working Group by Al-Karama, a Geneva-based, independent human rights organisation.
Inside Egypt's child torture chambers
Inside a filthy police van near Al-Azhar University an officer points to a fragment of light shining through a tiny opening: “See this bit of sun?” he asks Amena Yasser and the 16 other young men and women inside. “We’re going to put you behind it and we’ll see if you ever see the light of day for the rest of your life.” According to the Egyptian expression, when you put a person behind the sun they disappear.
It’s 24 December 2014 and 17-year-old Amena has been protesting against the removal of elected President Mohammed Morsi outside Egypt’s oldest university. Just moments into the march, state forces stormed the campus and attacked demonstrators with live ammunition, rubber bullets and tear gas. Amena was pounced on by a “thug”.
“He grabbed a wooden stick filled with nails and hit me really hard on the leg,” she tells MEMO. “I fell and he grabbed my hand. He and my friends pulled me back and forth for a few minutes and he beat us until I said to him: ‘Stop beating us. Take me and stop the beating’.”
A security officer bundled her into the van and Amena was taken to Nasr City police station where she was confronted with an exhausting list of charges: attacking an officer and stealing $36, setting fire to the university, illegal protesting, affiliation with a banned group, terrorising students, burning trees, preventing students from taking their exams and the use of weapons.
Amena believes the real reason she was arrested is because she stands up for what she believes in: “I defend the truth and confront unjust tyrants. They are dogs and they want the people to be obedient, be silent, eat and sleep. Nothing else.”
Whilst Amena has now been released there are still thousands of other young Egyptians languishing behind bars. It’s hard to know the exact figure because neither the government, the prison authorities nor the prosecutor general’s office provide statistics, but the human rights organisations Alkarama estimates at least 3,200 children have been detained since the overthrow of Egypt’s first freely elected President Mohammed Morsi as part of a concentrated effort to silence those who speak out against the coup.
As part of this sweeping crackdown, last year Egyptian President Abdel Fatah Al-Sisiintroduced a decree to enable individuals accused of damaging public infrastructure to be tried before military courts where basic due process rights, independence and impartiality are even worse than for those held under the authority of civilian judicial authorities.
Observers consider the decree to be a ruse for targeting peaceful protests against Al-Sisi - which have been ongoing since 2013 - because the decree states that demonstrating undermines public order and public infrastructure.
Seif Al-Islam Osama Shousha
“Children are part of the community. Tyrannical regimes are the only regimes that make every effort to thwart any protest movement, even if children under the age of 18 participate,” Alkarama’s Egypt researcher Ahmed Mefreh tells MEMO.
Sixteen-year-old Seif Al-Islam Osama Shousha is the youngest Egyptian to be tried in a military court, says Mefreh. Seif was arrested on 8 March last year in the port city of Damietta, badly beaten, wounded in the head and bleeding heavily. Injured, he spent all night at the police station without medical assistance, legal advice or being able to contact his parents. His detention has since been renewed more than 10 times.
In some cases the children disappear, Mefreh says, and are then “exposed” to the public as terrorists. Fifteen-year-old Obada Gomaa was abducted from Nasr City on 17 July this year, the first day of Eid, whilst playing football with his friends. At the time of his arrest he was severely beaten by police.
His family heard nothing until a few days later when the police shared a picture of Obada blindfolded and handcuffed in front of a table laid out with weapons, which he confessed to owning. Authorities have used the image to claim Obada is a dangerous criminal held on charges of making and producing firearms. Obada told his family on a recent visit that he was electrocuted until he confessed the charges. This is the second time he has been arrested.
According to Egyptian law, children under 15 cannot be placed in temporary custody. Egyptian Child Law and the Egyptian Constitution prohibit torture and detention without legal grounds. Furthermore, Egypt was one of the first countries to sign up to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), an internationally recognised agreement that calls for freedom from violence, abuse, exploitation and the provision of adequate health care.
Egypt’s disregard for these treaties is staggering: “Egypt does not only fail to implement or uphold the terms of the agreement,” Mefreh says of the CRC, “but also completely disregards its articles. It does not even implement the articles of Egyptian Child Law.” A closer look at the conditions these young prisoners are held in and it’s easy to see this is true.
Shortly after her initial interrogation at Nasr City police station, Amena was placed with another detainee in a cockroach-infested cell that was 1.5 square metres. It was six hours before an officer came to ask if they needed anything.
“We said we needed to use the toilet, but he said no. This happened three times in an attempt to provoke us. Asmaa Mady was my cellmate and she is still imprisoned,” says Amena of the third year dentistry student who was also arrested at Al-Azhar University last year. “The situation got worse and no one would let us out to use the bathroom so we found bags with old food in them, emptied them onto the floor and relieved ourselves in the bags out of desperation.”
Amena was later locked up with older detainees, which is prohibited by the CRC, and threatened by them: “One of the inmates constantly threatened me with rape while I was asleep and would describe what would happen to me while I slept, so I was unable to sleep all night whenever she was in my cell. They continued to add people and the numbers reached 49 in a cell that barely fit 10. We slept in turns; some slept while others stood.”
One day Amena’s family were waiting outside the prison to see her when she was handcuffed and taken to the hospital where she was forced to take a pregnancy test. “When it was my turn to take the blood test, I completely lost consciousness and couldn’t speak,” she says.
Seif’s father has also described the poor treatment his son receives at the hands of police officials where he is being held at the Farscor police department. He says they throw the prisoners’ belongings outside their cells, shave their heads daily and allow visitation times of barely a minute throughout which two soldiers sit between Seif and his family, Mefreh explains.
For young prisoners psychological and sexual abuse and torture inside prison is widespread: “The detention centres in Egypt, especially for children, do not comply with the minimum standards. They are merely torture chambers for children... we documented 52 cases of sexual abuse and rape in Alexandria's Koum El-Dekka,” says Mefreh of the prison that has been dubbed “the slaughterhouse”. This has a damaging, long-term effect on children, or “the assassination of their futures” as Mefreh puts it.
It has been almost a year since her release but Amena says she still has nightmares. “I wake up frightened and I cry until my mother comes and comforts me.” For a while after she was released Amena would sleep on the floor and avoided walking alone in the street, taking public transport or taxis, or passing officers, soldiers and military institutions.
She is currently living with her mother in Turkey, but says she spends “every waking moment” wishing she could go home to see her father, siblings, nieces and nephews. “I wish for just a moment to see them and hug them,” she says. “We must all return to our homeland because it’s the place of our origin, our roots and our cause. It is our duty to liberate it from the hands of unjust tyrants – Al-Sisi and those helping him.”
Source : https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/re...rture-chambers
Meet Mohamed Soltan: The 500-day hunger striker who survived a massacre
Despite being shot, beaten, tortured, starved for 500 days and having a father on death row, Mohamed Soltan is hopeful for the future
MEE interviewed Soltan on his trip to London, where he charted his emotional journey: from witnessing a massacre to nearly dying of starvation in jail. Watch the full interview below:
Mohamed Soltan was one of Egypt’s most high-profile prisoners political prisoners. In 2013 he was arrested for his part in demonstrations against the coup that overthrew president Mohamed Morsi.
Soltan, who holds a US passport, was arrested shortly after the Rabaa square protests, where he mediated between foreign media and protest leaders. He spent nearly two years in an Egyptian jail, 490 days of which he was on hunger strike. He lost a third of his body weight, nearly dying 10 times.
His hunger strike gained worldwide attention, adding pressure on the US government to ultimately secure his release.
Rabaa massacre: “The world has forgotten that this took place”
Soltan recounts haunting memories of the Rabaa massacre, where he was “shot at for 11 hours before a safe exist was secured”. A shot missed his head by inches as one hit his arm. He accused the Sisi government of deliberately targeting him because he “was live tweeting” and expressed shock at just how bloody the day became. But what haunts him the most is that “the world has forgotten this took place”.
Beatings and torture
Soltan talks through “being beaten by batons and whips and the back of belts,” and of enduring torture that no one should ever have to endure. At one point they even threw a dying man into his room to die, leaving his corpse in there with him. When all this failed to break Soltan’s spirit they started to torture his father and tell him about it. There is a bitter irony, he said: “I went into prison because of who my father was and I came out and my father is being targeted because I am being outspoken.”
Palestinian hunger strikers, Malcolm X and the Civil Rights Movement
Palestinian hunger strikers were a major inspiration to Soltan’s own hunger strike as a means of non-violent resistance. He never thought that he was going to come out of prison alive, but considering that “so many people have paid a hefty price for freedom, my life wasn’t worth any more than theirs”.
Malcolm X’s autobiography was another major inspiration, although Soltan had already read the book: “To read it again, in that context, in that environment, was so uplifting, so inspirational.” The American civil rights movement gave Soltan hope for Egypt's future: “The struggle is long but we’ll get there.”
“My father became my best friend”
His father, Salah Soltan, held a post in the Morsi administration and was arrested around the same time and sentenced to death. He said his father became his best friend in prison, saving his life 10 times. It is his father’s “positive energy” that, throughout all the pain, has managed to keep a smile on his face.
"The world has turned a blind eye to what is happening in Egypt"
Soltan also talked about the privilege that comes with duel Egyptian-American citizenship:
“I had the advantage of having some US embassy oversight. The embassy would visit every month and I would tell them everything I was going through; so you can only begin to imagine what 40,000 political prisoners, that have no over oversight, have no backing [are going through]. Its own government is killing them slowly. That stays with me every single day but it’s also what gives me the motivation to keep going, to keep giving them a voice. To let the world know what is happening, what is going on in these prisons and what the people are enduring, that no human being should ever have to endure.”
Hope, in spite of hell
In spite of everything - the torture, beatings, hunger strike, a father on death row - hope remains Soltan’s shining constant. But he reminds us that hope needs light, awareness and public pressure to survive. He calls for more to be done to raise public awareness over what is going on in Egyptian prisons. Awareness that snowballs into pressuring governments to take action.
The ultimate lesson of his story, he says, is that “non-violent resistance works” but “everybody has to do their part, so us on the outside have got the greater responsibility.”
Egyptian Parliament Abroad Slams Junta Abduction of Young Groom at Wedding
The Human Rights Committee of the (legitimate) Egyptian Parliament Abroad condemns Interior Ministry security forces' arrest and detention of a young bridegroom from his own wedding, taking him to an unknown location.
The Egyptian Parliament abroad followed with increasing concern the case of the public kidnapping by Egyptian coup forces of young Bader Al-Gamal from his wedding party and from the midst of all his family, friends and neighbors, in a ferocious and most humiliating manner.
This is the first time we hear of an abduction of a bridegroom on his wedding day, the worst case of brutal barbarism by coup authorities against Egyptian youth.
The Egyptian Parliament calls on human rights organizations to stand firmly against enforced disappearances perpetrated against young people, especially in such atrocious manner – never seen or heard of in Egypt before.
This Parliament holds the coup regime fully responsible for Bader Al-Gamal's life. We demand an immediate investigation into this abduction operation.
Egyptian Parliament Abroad - Human Rights Committee
Thursday – November 12, 2015
Sourse : http://ikhwanweb.com/article.php?id=32340
4,000 Egyptian workers to be fired on charges of affiliation with the Muslim Brotherhood
News reports have revealed the Egyptian government’s intention to fire nearly 4,000 public and private sector employees on charges of affiliation with the Muslim Brotherhood. The Interior Ministry also announced yesterday, in two separate statements, its arrest of 60 members of the Brotherhood on charges of gathering to protest next 25 January, to mark the fourth anniversary of the 2011 revolution.
Alyoum7 newspaper reported yesterday that the arrests occurred after members of the Muslim Brotherhood were implicated in the disastrous flooding of Alexandria that caused several deaths.
The newspaper quoted unnamed sources as saying that over 4,000 Brotherhood leaders are still present in various neighbourhoods and municipalities as directors, ministry representatives, or heads of sectors.
The newspaper also reported that the Minister of Local Development Ahmed Zaki Badr tasked the ministry’s investigations agency with making a list of the names of individuals associated with the Muslim Brotherhood who currently hold leadership positions in order to send it to the monitoring parties.
According to Alyoum7, the sources reported that the monitoring parties are supervising the plan to fire the Brotherhood members and that the plan is due to be presented to the prime minister. This will then be submitted to the president’s administration for review before measures are taken in this regard.
According to reports by monitoring parties, the number of Muslim Brotherhood members working in municipality offices and the Local Development Ministry has exceeded 800, and that the “purging” process will be carried out by firing Brotherhood leaders from any vital position in the state.
Source : https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/ne...im-brotherhood
1840 ‘vanish’ over past year in Sisi’s Egypt
Agencies | 01 Jumadal Ukhra 1437/11 March 2016
A number of rights groups in Egypt report that since Magdy Abdel Ghaffar was appointed interior minister in March 2015, enforced disappearance has become unofficial security policy of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s junta government in response to economic instability and the ISIL-linked insurgency in the North Sinai.
The Egyptian Co-ordination for Rights and Freedoms claims to have recorded 1,840 cases of enforced disappearance in 2015. A report by the Nadeem Centre, which provides rehabilitation for victims of state violence, identified 66 disappearances in January.
The European Parliament motion recognises the Nadeem Centre’s role in the “provision of information on torture, killings and the worst abuses in detention,” and criticises the Egyptian authorities’ recent move to close the centre on ”false accusations pertaining to health violations.”
Reports of widespread enforced disappearance is testament to the growing influence of the military, which reaches across the judiciary, security and intelligence services. Activists say that with “carte blanche to discourage dissent” in the struggle for stability, security services prey on citizens with impunity.
However, Ghaffar claimed there had been “not even a single case” of enforced disappearance. Those who disagree are “jumping to false conclusions,” Ghaffar said in January, claiming that “we are 90 million citizens – the disappearance of 200 is normal.” The Egyptian government was unavailable for further comment this week.
“The failure of public prosecution to seriously investigate disapperance cases reinforces the near absolute impunity that security forces have enjoyed under President Sisi,” said Joe Stork, Middle East and North Africa deputy director of Human Rights Watch.
Moreover, the danger is no longer limited to Egyptian nationals. The European Parliament’s debate yesterday was prompted by the murder in January of Italian academic Giulio Regeni, whose tortured body was found by a road
Source : http://www.ciibroadcasting.com/2016/03/11/1840-vanish-over-past-year-in-sisis-egypt/
The number of Egyptian prisons have increased from 42 to 51, after the addition of 9 new prisons between 2013 - 2015
Directly taken from the U.S embassy in Cairo's page:
Today, the first shipment of MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) vehicles from the United States arrived in the port of #Alexandria for delivery to the Egyptian military. Today’s delivery is the first batch of a total of 762 MRAP vehicles that the United States will transfer to Egypt. This new capability will be used to #CombatTerrorism and promote #stability in the region. #USSupportForEgypt
Dictators don’t stabilize the Middle East. They just create more terrorists.
I learned that firsthand working on the Middle East for the State Department.
By Lauren Kosa
Lauren Kosa worked at the State Department from 2008 to January 2016 and covered the Human Rights portfolio for the Egypt Desk from 2010 to 2012. She is working on her first novel, inspired by her experiences in the region. These views do not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. government.
Lately, I’ve noticed an increased number of American politicians suggesting that the Arab Spring was a disaster and that the region needs strongmen to stabilize it. Ted Cruz famously insisted that the Middle East was safer when Saddam Hussein and Moammar Gaddafi were in power. Rand Paul said the current chaos stems from the toppling of dictators. Even Bernie Sanders argued on “Meet the Press” that while our ultimate goal is democracy, the region would be more stable under dictators.
But when I worked on Middle East policy at the State Department, I saw just how destabilizing dictators in the region are. I worked on Egypt and human rights as a human rights-focused country desk officer from 2010 to 2012. There, I saw the brutal tactics of President Hosni Mubarak’s government destabilize the country.
On the desk, I watched Mubarak’s government undermine and dismantle the very institutions that could have paved the way to a more stable and peaceful country. By restricting which new political parties could be established, controlling what they could sayand engaging in election fraud, it prevented Egypt’s political opposition parties from gaining experience. And by attempting to control the activities and funding of organizations such as the National Democratic Institute, International Republican Institute and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems, it diminished Egyptians’ access to important political training in democratic processes.
At times, it resorted to a more direct approach. I met with liberal Egyptian activists who were arrested for their political beliefs, journalists who were jailed for their writing and others who had suffered violence at the hands of Egypt’s security forces. Most genuinely wanted to improve their government and help build bridges between their government and its people. They could have been partners for helping their government to address grievances, but too often they were met with harassment or worse. I will never forget my meeting with one brave blogger who had been threatened and detained by security forces.He told me his heart was broken because the country he loved and wanted to help was the same one persecuting him. Nor could I forget the politician who longed to run as a candidate on liberal democratic values but was a member of one of the many political parties denied the right to form under Mubarak’s government.
These are the people and groups that would have helped prepare Egypt for a rigorous electoral process. Egypt’s talented opposition candidates, if given the opportunity to practice, could have waged stronger campaigns. Its civil society, if given the chance to flourish, could have paved the way to more issue-based politics. But they never had the opportunity to practice.
Mubarak’s fierce restriction of Egypt’s political scene set the stage for Egypt’s 2011 revolution. The November 2010 elections that preceded the revolution were considered to be among themost fraudulent in Egypt’s modern history. Egyptians became convinced that the Mubarak government was willing to take any measure to preserve its power, even brutality against its own citizens. The beating to death by police of 28-year-old Egyptian Khaled Said in 2010, whose image was widely circulated, was a trigger for Egyptians’ discontent to boil over into a demand for change. Or as one Egyptian friend put it to me, “we couldn’t get that picture out of our heads.” With little prospect for reform, the government’s legitimacy crumbled
In other words: Mubarak created the chaos that ensued when he was ousted.
With the increased concern about terrorism, this lesson is more important than ever. Allying ourselves with regional strongmen may make things stable in the short run, but it hurts us in the long run. Terrorism flourishes in places where the government is no longer seen as being on the side of the people. Human rights play an important role in that equation.
The Egyptian activists and politicians I met believed strongly in a democratic Egypt but were prevented under Mubarak’s government from building the political structures and civil society they needed to succeed. Without unfettered political training, free speech and the ability to form alliances around common goals, democracy cannot fully develop and true stability cannot be achieved.
Mubarak’s fierce repression alienated his population. His government worked to snuff out civil society and the beginnings of small liberal democratic movements to make it appear as though there were no alternatives. It created the false illusion that the United States had to choose between it and radical Islamists.
It is no secret that the Middle East is aflame and that terrorism constitutes a real threat in Egypt and throughout the region. But the most formidable enemy is created the moment we stop holding governments accountable to their peoples’ highest values. The best way to win is to nourish the small democratic movements and encourage states in which their citizens believe they truly have a stake and a future.
Lauren Kosa worked at the State Department from 2008 to January 2016 and covered the Human Rights portfolio for the Egypt Desk from 2010 to 2012. She is working on her first novel, inspired by her experiences in the region. These views do not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. government.
Egypt blocks U.N. call to respect 'democratically elected' government in Turkey
(Reuters) - The United Nations Security Council failed on Saturday to condemn the violence and unrest in Turkey after Egypt objected to a statement that called on all parties to "respect the democratically elected government of Turkey," diplomats said.
The U.S.-drafted statement, seen by Reuters, also expressed grave concern over the situation in Turkey, urged the parties to show restraint, avoid any violence or bloodshed, and called for an urgent end to the crisis and return to rule of law.
Statements by the 15-member Security council have to be agreed by consensus.
"We proposed different language that respects democratic and constitutional principles but the Americans refused to engage," Egypt's U.N. Ambassador Amr Aboulatta told Reuters.
Diplomats said Egypt asked for a call for all parties to "respect the democratically elected government of Turkey" to be removed from the draft statement, saying the council is "in no position to qualify, or label that government - or any other government for that matter - as democratically elected or not."
After the United States and Britain objected to the proposed change to the text, Egypt proposed that the council call on the parties in Turkey to "respect the democratic and constitutional principles and the rule of law," diplomats said.
Negotiations on the text ended at this point, diplomats said.
The Egyptian Foreign Ministry said that it was "surprised that its proposed amendment was not taken up, and with the claim that it is obstructing the release of the statement."
Turkish forces loyal to President Tayyip Erdogan largely crushed an attempted military coup on Saturday after crowds answered his call to take to the streets in support of the government and dozens of rebels abandoned their tanks.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi is a former general who overthrew elected President Mohamed Mursi, of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood, in 2013 after mass protests against Mursi. Turkey provided support for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.
Source : http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSKCN0ZW0ZN
Egypt clears Mubarak of charges of killing protesters in 2011 uprising
Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has today been cleared of charges of killing protesters in the 2011 uprising that lead to his removal from power.
After an all-day hearing, Judge Ahmed Abdel Qawi announced: “The court has found the defendant innocent.”
The court also rejected demands by lawyers of the victims to reopen civil suits, leaving no remaining option for appeal or retrial.
The verdict could lead to Mubarak being freed.
A report commission by Mubarak’s predecessor Mohamed Morsi said at least 846 protesters were killed during the uprising in early 2011, but Egypt’s interior ministry – which controls the police force – repeatedly denied responsibility.
Police were said to have used live ammunition and arms against those demonstrating to end Mubarak’s rule of almost 30 years.
15 Years In Jail For Saying To Hosni Mubarak: ”Fear Allah”
Man who told Mubarak to ‘fear God’ speaks out after serving 15 years in jail
by Eman El-Shenawi - May 23, 2012
An Egyptian man who had once told former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to “fear God” after meeting with him in a mosque has spoken out about being subject to harsh treatment while serving 15 years in prison for saying those two words.
In 1993, Sheikh Ali al-Qattan was praying at the Prophet’s mosque in Saudi Arabia, the second holiest site in Islam, when he was surprised to find Mubarak entering the prayer hall.
“It was a spontaneous incident, I didn’t plan for this,” Qattan told Egyptian television talk show “Al Haqiqa” (The Truth) this week.
“After we finished prayer I turned and I saw the president; it was strange because they had emptied a large section of the prayer hall for him to enter. He had bodyguards around him that were heavily armed; it all looked very hostile and made the atmosphere in mosque uncomfortable.”
Qattan then stood up and walked closer to the former president and told him to “fear God, ” in a display of his anger at how Mubarak was leading the country.
At the time, Qattan explains, Egypt was embroiled in deadly clashes with
Islamistinsurgents. The year 1993 was a particularly severe year for terrorist attacks in Egypt, resulting in at least 1100 people being killed or wounded, while several senior police officials and their bodyguards were shot dead in daylight ambushes.
“Security forces would roam the country’s streets and randomly firing at Egyptians,” Qattan explains.
After saying his remark, Qattan said Mubarak “immediately looked uneasy.”
“He spun left and right to look around him to call his bodyguards. The guards immediately seized me violently and surrounded Mubarak, pushing him quickly outside of the prayer hall. I then understood that he was probably scared that some sort of violent attack on him would follow.
“The guards then put their hands over my mouth, as if to stop me from saying anything more, but I hadn’t planned to. They took me out of the hall, not even giving me a chance to wear my shoes.
“They carried out a body search to look for a bomb or a weapon. When they couldn’t find anything on me, one officer told me: ‘You’ve embarrassed us. You should have told [Mubarak] that in Egypt.’”
To that, Qattan then responded: “We’re in a mosque; it’s for all of the international Muslim community and it felt right to say such a [religious] comment in a mosque.”
Sheikh Qattan was taken from Medina to a Jeddah province to be interrogated. He recalls being dragged down by a “10-kilogram chain and ball” whilst walking in the airport to the plane.
After he was questioned in Saudi Arabia, a group from Egypt’s National Security came to take him back to Egypt.
“It was as if I was a terrorist. They tied me up with several chains and handcuffs. They even wanted to sedate me, pressuring me to drink the sedative, but I told them I was fasting and would not drink anything,” he said,
When Qattan arrived in Egypt, the investigators found that Qattan had no affiliation to
Islamicmilitant or terrorist groups.
The former prison officer at the jail Qattan was detained in, Major-General Ibrahim Abd al-Ghaffar, described how Qattan was treated during his imprisonment.
“For years he was locked up in solitary confinement and not allowed to have visitors by an order from the interior minister. I decided to take him out of the room he was locked in and every day I would tell him to come to my office, where he could sit with me and drink tea. I knew he was being tyrannized.”
Ghaffar then asked another Major-General to write a request for Qattan to be released. But the request was rejected by former presidential chief of staff, Zakariya Azmy, who said that Mubarak was still “disturbed” by Qattan’s case and to not mention the topic again, Ghaffar said. The request was then appealed several times before the authorities eventually agreed to free Qattan by 2007.
During the television interview, Qattan mentioned that in Islamic history, the term “Fear God” was said to the caliphs (successors) of Islam.
“Caliphs used to urge people to advise them to fear God. When they heard it, they would not be infuriated [like Mubarak was], but they would welcome it as advice.
“There is no higher example of democracy than this,” Qattan added.
Despite this religious delineation, Mubarak had still ordered his detainment for 15 years without being tried and under tormenting circumstances.
Sisi’s supporters, opponents stage rallies in Washington DC
US President Donald Trump has warmly received his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in the White House, ignoring warnings by rights groups about the Sisi government’s human rights abuses.
Trump praised Sisi, saying he has done a fantastic job in Egypt. The Egyptian president also hailed Trump and called the US an ally. Prior to the meeting, Human Rights Watch had slammed the White House for inviting Sisi despite his government’s widespread violation of human rights. Relations between Washington and Cairo were strained under former US President Barack Obama. Sisi led a military coup to overthrow the country’s first democratically elected President Mohamed Morsi in 2013. Egyptian security forces violently suppressed the protests that followed Morsi’s ouster. Meanwhile, Sisi’s supporters and opponents have gathered in Washington DC in reaction to his trip. The opponents carried banners with slogans such as “Sisi must go” and “wanted Egyptian murderer”.
Author and Political Commentator
Mohamed Soltan slams Abdel Fattah el-Sisi's regime