• Torture
  • July 26, 2009
  • 4 minutes read

New MB victim of torture by the SSI

New MB victim of torture by the SSI

The torture incident of Muslim Brotherhood member Abdullah Maher Ibrahim Awad from Al Fouakhria, near Al-Arish in Northern Sinai, highlights a new series of large-scale and systematic torture operations in violation of human rights by the State Security Investigation against the citizens, the Brotherhood exerts.

Details of this tragic incident started on March 25, 2009, when Maher was arrested by security forces after his home was raided on charges of belonging to the banned Brotherhood and providing humanitarian aid to the Palestinian people in Gaza. He was then held at the Lazoughli headquarters of State Security in Cairo for two months, during which time he suffered the most severe forms of torture and humiliation. His family did not know anything about what was going on throughout this detention.

On May 25, the ministry of the interior issued another arrest warrant for the suspect, and then deported Maher to Al-Marg prison in a new episode of suffering. He had been held in solitary confinement for one month without the minimum necessities needed for healthy living. Although his health worsened during the detention, he was also beaten and subjected to brutal torture by the State Security.

Hajj Maher, the father, says the prison”s administration did not allow them to visit the inmate until June 2. When they were allowed to visit, they discovered their son in a state of severe fatigue. He now suffers from a severe limp in his leg as a result of his detention. He had no prior condition.

The family used to visit Maher weekly until they found out on the third visit that he suffers from acute headaches to the point of tears due to weak analgesics given to him by the prison doctor. When the family decided to visit him the fourth time on June 29, they noted a squint and severe tumor in his eyes. It was diagnosed by Maher”s brother as paralysis of the eye as a direct result of high pressure on the optic nerve blood flow. He was advised by his brother to demand from the prison doctor a CT scan of the brain and take the necessary treatment. However, the prison doctor refused and continued giving him solutions and sedatives without result.

Abdullah thought that his suffering was coming to an end when the decision to release him was issued by the court on June 30, however, the interior ministry disagreed and a new arrest warrant was issued. Maher was then transferred to Burj Al Arab Prison to begin another journey of suffering.

His lawyer made numerous requests for a CT scan beginning July 1. The prison administration accepted to transfer the detainee to Alexandria University Hospital after exerting strong pressure. The scan revealed a bloody brain that was putting pressure in and around the brain, causing optic nerve damage and emergency surgery. One July 19, Maher underwent surgery.

When asked about the fact that he was beaten in the headquarters of the State Security in Cairo and Al-Marg Prison, Maher said that the agents of torture deliberately targeted his head. The authorities tried to transfer him back to Al-Marg, but the physicians, due to his serious health condition, insisted on the need to stay in the hospital to complete the treatment. Maher is now lying in one of the wards amid tight security and is bound to the bed.

His father demands a notification from the Burj Al-Arab warden, the Attorney General, Interior Minister and the President for his son’s release because of his unstable health conditions and the fact the judiciary has acquitted him of all charges previously alleged by the Supreme State Security Prosecution.