• March 24, 2015
  • 5 minutes read

Rights Organization Launches Million-Signature Petition to Stop Politicized Executions

Rights Organization Launches Million-Signature Petition to Stop Politicized Executions

 The Egyptian Coordinating Committee of Rights and Freedoms (ECRF) announced the launch of a human rights campaign, a petition, which aims to collect "one million signatures" to persuade the High Commissioner for Human Rights of the United Nations to submit a request to the Egyptian authorities to stop the implementation of death penalties issued against Egyptian opponents since the July 3, 2013 coup d’état.

ECRF set up a petition page on avaas.org website under the slogan إعدام وطن (The execution of a homeland) pleading with the United Nations to urgently intervene to stop the execution of a number of leaders and members of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt along with dozens of opponents of the current ruling regime, which grabbed power after the illegitimate military coup on July 3, 2013.

ECRF also announced the launch of the campaign’s official page on Facebook (also under the name إعدام وطن: Execution of a homeland), stressing that the purpose of the campaign is to stop the horrifying vengeful executions, which further cause untold material, financial and moral damages, especially since those death sentences in Egypt are purely political and lack fairness and due legal process.

The text of the petition letter to the United Nations reads as follows: "Over a period not exceeding one year, more than 500 Egyptians received politicized death sentences, in kangaroo courts and political show trials that lacked the most basic fair trial standards. Most of those citizens now wait to be hanged, to leave behind sons, daughters, wives and other family members who will miss them forever because there are individuals who want to deny them the right to life. Please save Egyptian citizens. Stop the execution of the homeland".

The Revolutionary Coalition for Egyptian Women, the Revolutionary Coalition of Professional Movements (HERAK), and leaders of the Anti-Coup Pro-Legitimacy National Alliance, as well as Students Against the Coup, Journalists For Reform, and other rights movements have praised and expressed appreciation for the petition initiative and called for solidarity with ECRF in all its demands to stop the unjust executions. Moreover, they called for non-violent actions through all revolutionary channels to denounce and reject these evidently politicized mass death sentences.

The latest census carried out by human rights organizations about death sentences in Egypt shows that about 435 of those are in a so-called preliminary or provisional judgment stage, and therefore can still be challenged or appealed, while 44 await the final opinion of the Mufti (officially a rubberstamp on death sentences). In addition, one death sentence was implemented, on March 7, 2015, where the junta hanged Mahmoud Ramadan, one of the opponents of the military coup, after convicting him in a trumped-up case in Alexandria.

Earlier, junta courts sentenced to death 1480 Muslim Brotherhood leaders, members and supporters. Of those, a thousand were eventually acquitted or had their sentences commuted to imprisonment, while 44 others still await the Mufti’s opinion and the court’s final decision.

Since the illegitimate military coup that overthrew the democratically elected President Morsi on July 3, 2013, coup authorities rounded up and detained tens of thousands of leaders and members of the Muslim Brotherhood and other groups and opposition symbols. Invariably, the junta brings a ‘standard’ list of trumped-up charges against all political opponents, which always allege acts of violence and terrorism, blocking roads and obstruction, most often ending up with harsh sentencing, like execution, life imprisonment or long prison terms, in typically unjust trials that lack all semblance of fairness, transparency and integrity.