• March 27, 2015
  • 6 minutes read

Forgotten Prisoners in Egypt Appeal: Stop Junta Torture of Political Detainees

Forgotten Prisoners in Egypt Appeal: Stop Junta Torture of Political Detainees

 To all those who care about human rights, humanity and especially prisoners of conscience, to the defenders of freedom and democracy, to all human rights and media organizations in the world…

This is an urgent statement from us, the prisoners of conscience in Egypt, about the reality of the situation now in Egypt’s prisons, police stations, security directorates and detention centers, and about the horror of torture and unspeakable ill-treatment of all prisoners of conscience.

Torture and humiliating treatment start from the moment junta security personnel arrest political detainees – since the June 30, 2013 coup; but things got much worse quite unexpectedly since the new interior minister (Magdi Abdel Ghaffar) took charge of the ministry, in order to show the junta regime his loyalty and efficiency, at the expense of prisoners of conscience and their families, and even their little children during visits.

Here are some examples of junta security violations at detention centers:

1. The prison administration removes from cells all essentials of daily living (eg blankets, clothes, cooking tools) although all these are brought, kept and used there in the first place with the full knowledge of the prison administration, mostly purchased from the same prison’s cafeteria.

2. Torture and abuse, especially of the elderly and former senior officials (eg members of parliament, ministers, officials).

3. Banning entry of food (eg from prisoners’ families), except rarely, while food provided by the prison administration is of such extremely poor quality it is not fit for human consumption.

4. Deliberately cutting off water and electricity, while increasing numbers of prisoners in each cell to the point where it is impossible to co-exist.

5. Limiting visit time to 10 minutes, although the law states a visit can last a full hour, in addition to the deliberate humiliation of prisoners in front of their families during visits.

6. Beating some prisoners’ families, especially children and old people, in front of the prisoners.

7. Cutting periods of exercise significantly short, thus causing various illnesses, eg skin diseases and bone and joint problems.

8. Severe neglect by the prison hospital, especially in the treatment of prisoners with chronic diseases and the elderly.

9. Poor medical service and lack of medicines and emergency and chronic disease requirements at the prison hospital.

10. Banning all access to media, news etc, totally isolating inmates and detainees from the world outside.

11. Deliberately insulting prisoners during inspections, as when they go out to attend prosecutor or court sessions, specially known political figures.

12. Deliberately sending prisoners and detainees to places of detention far away from their cities, homes and families, and sudden and frequent transfer of prisoners between different jails, in inhumane ways, resulting in increased hardship and suffering for the prisoners and their families.

13. Deliberately exaggerating the cruelty of treatment and humiliation of prisoners when those discuss any human or legal points with the prison administration.