Friday, July 18, 2014

Egypt: Egyptian student spends 175 days in prison without charge

Source: IFEX

On 16 July 2014, the North Cairo Criminal Court renewed the imprisonment of 18-year-old student Mahmoud Mohamed for 45 days after having been arrested as part of the random arrests the security forces were undertaking during the third anniversary of the 25 January revolution this year.

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) denounces the Court's decision to extend his detention.

Mohamed was walking home when he got arrested on 25 January 2014. He was targeted for wearing a scarf with the slogan "Jan 25 Revolution" written on it and a shirt that said "Nation without Torture". Once he was taken away to detention, Mohamed was forced to make a confession of being linked to the Muslim Brotherhood and of possessing explosives. The confession was extracted under torture as he was being beaten and subjected to continuous hours of electric shock.

He now faces charges of belonging to a terrorist group, possessing explosives, and inciting acts of violence. Mohamed was transferred multiple times, firstly from the Al-Marg police station then to Abu Zabaal prison and finally to the Appeal Court prison.

Mohamed's brother, activist Tareq Tito, was arrested alongside him on the same day in Maadi but was later acquitted.

"The reasons behind the arrest of Mahmoud Mohamed are biased and unjust, as he wasn't caught committing any acts of violence. This is a clear violation of the freedom to peacefully express oneself," stated ANHRI. "Also, the torture that he experienced during his detention contradicts all international standards and covenants on human rights."

ANHRI calls on the Egyptian government to immediately release Mohamed and to investigate the torture allegations. ANHRI also calls for the release of all prisoners of conscience as per the international covenants and agreements that Egypt signed on.