Egypt: 1,840 enforced disappearances in 2015

EPA/KHALED ELFIQI

Amnesty International reports that the Egyptian authorities are torturing detainees, use excessive force against protesters and even arrest people for their perceived sexual orientation or gender identity.

The Egyptian Co-ordination for Rights and Freedoms claims to have recorded 1,840 cases of enforced disappearance in 2015.


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The Egyptian government is accused of allowing approximately two thousand enforced disappearances in 2015, according to a report by the British daily, The Independent.

The British daily cited the Egyptian Co-ordination for Rights and Freedoms associations which recorded 1,840 cases of enforced disappearance in 2015. Moreover, another humanitarian NGO, the Human Rights Monitor based on the UK, reported that in February two Egyptian citizens were disappeared after the Egyptian police stormed their houses.

Two days ago, the members of the European Parliament also voted a resolution expressing their deep concern about the human rights situation in Egypt. The MEPs condemned the death of Giulio Regini, a 28-year old Italian doctoral student at Cambridge University, who disappeared on 25 January 2016 in Cairo and found dead on 2 February next to a road in the outskirts of the Egyptian capital. The MEPs stressed that the Italian police was reported to have a credible witness who saw Regini stopped by plain-clothes security officers on the evening of his disappearance.

The MEPs underlined that the case of Giulio Regini follows a long list of enforced disappearances that have occurred in Egypt since the military coup of July 2013. They underlined that in 2015, the Egyptian Commission for Rights and Freedom reported the disappearance of 1,700 persons at the hands of the state security forces. Moreover, in summer 2015, the UN Working Group on Enforced Disappearances reported it had referred the cases of 66 people to the Egyptian authorities for urgent action.

Once asked about the enforced disappearances, Mohamed Elmissiry, a researcher with Amnesty International said that the goal of the Egyptian government “seems to be to terrorize society, to show that anyone who dares criticize the government will face a similar fate.” According to the MEPs, Regini was in Egypt because he was conducting a research in Cairo on the development of independent trade unions in Egypt.

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