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Egypt: Peaceful Detainees Tortured, Killed in Cold Blood

Rights Organization Affirms Peaceful Detainees Brutally Tortured, Killed in Cold Blood

by Julie Webb-Pullman
August 19, 2013

Human rights researcher at Karama organization Ahmad Mefreh condemns today's detainee killings.

Ahmad Mefreh, human rights researcher at Karama organization reported and said as follows regarding today's detainee killings:

The detainees were transferred to Abu Zaabal Prison after spending the past few days in Nasr City Police Stations 1 and 2, having been detained according to emergency law.

The number of detainees transferred to Abu Zaabal was 612, most of whom had been detained when Rabaa sit-in was cleared.

The detainees were tortured and savagely beaten at Nasr City Police Stations 1 and 2 after being detained during the clearing of the sit-ins, and they were not given necessary medical care.

They were only given food and drink once a day, and medical care was not given to the wounded or inhumanely tortured among them.

According to the lawyers I spoke with, they went to Nasr City Police Stations 1 and 2 to be present during the questioning of the detainees when they learned it had commenced.

The guards and investigators refused to let the lawyers enter the police stations, and when they informed the prosecutor's office, there was no response.

Questioning of the accused in Nasr City Police Stations 1 and 2 without the presence of their lawyers is a clear violation of the law, of the constitutional declaration and of international law.

The lawyers have informed us that the detainees are to be held for 15 days for questioning, and they do not know the names of all of them until now.

Some of the detainees are well-known, like Hussam Abu Al-Bukhari, and Mohamed Al-Areeni, the producer and media figure.

I have received information from some families that their children, under 17 years of age, are among the detainees who were in Nasr City Police Stations 1 and 2.

The information I received was that the murderous incident occurred while detainees were being handed over. They were not under supervision of the Abu Zaabal Prison guards, and the actions against them were by the transfer guards.

Transfer guards are usually not equipped with tear gas. So, the interior ministry's version of events is questionable.

Also, regarding the interior ministry's version of events, the use of tear gas on that number of detainees in the confined space of a transfer truck is direct killing, not riot dispersal.

ENDS

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