Egypt: Solidarity with Alaa and the Maspero accused

Solidarity with Alaa Abdelfattah and other detainees in Egypt at Occupy London on the steps of St Pauls' Cathedral - 5 Nov 2011

Updated with signatures 17 November

We condemn the Egyptian authorities’ campaign of legal intimidation, torture and deadly violence against those who have continued to raise their voices and mobilise in the streets in support of the demands of the 25 January revolution: change, democracy and social justice.

We note with particular concern the following recent developments:

· The charges levelled at activists and participants in the peaceful protest at Maspero in Cairo on 9 October which was attacked by the army and gangs of thugs leading to the death of at least 26 people. Rather than investigating this crime, the military prosecutors have accused the victims of military aggression of assault, stealing weapons and inciting violence. Two prominent bloggers and activists, Alaa Abdelfattah and Bahaa Saber are among the accused and Alaa was detained on 30 October for refusing to co-operate with the military authorities. Mina Daniel, an activist who was shot dead by the military on 9 October is also named among the accused.

· The death under torture of Essam Ali Atta, who was serving a two-year prison sentence in Tora prison following a military trial earlier this year.

· The escalating campaign of harassment and intimidation directed at journalists and media workers who refuse to submit to military censorship.

· Increasing violence directed at protests and strikes by students and workers in support of their social and political demands.

To date at least 12,000 Egyptian civilians have been subjected to covert military trials. Military courts are fundamentally unfair; the accused are often denied counsel, the opportunity to review evidence or examine witnesses; they have limited avenues of appeal. Eighteen death sentences have been handed down so far.

We declare our solidarity with the calls by Egyptian activists, trade unionists, human rights organisations and political groups for:

1. An end to military trials of civilians

2. Independent and impartial investigations into the events of 9 October and other events that have resulted in the death and disappearance of civilians, such as the attacks on peaceful demonstrators on 9 April in Tahrir Square, on 23 July in Abbaseyya and on 9 September in front of the Israeli Embassy;

3. The immediate release of blogger and activist Alaa Abdelfattah and the 28 other detainees implicated in the Maspiro events;

4. The immediate lifting of the state of emergency in place in Egypt since 1981.

5. Respect by the Egyptian civilian and military authorities for the rights of Egyptian citizens to freedom of expression, to join and build political organisations and trade unions, and to take part in protests, strikes and demonstrations.

Signatures from the UK

John McDonnell, MP; Sally Hunt, General Secretary, University and College Union (UCU); Martin Gould, President, SERTUC; Sean Vernell, National Executive; Estelle Hart, National Women’s Officer, National Union of Students; Kat Banyard, UK Feminista; Karen Reissman, UNISON National Executive (pc); Sara Bennett, UNITE Executive; Sue Bond, Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) Vice-President; John McLaughlin, Branch Secretary, Tower Hamlets UNISON (pc); Phoebe Watkins, Camden UNISON (pc); Jordan Riveria UNISON (pc); Beverley Carberry UNISON (pc); Pete Ainsley UNISON (pc); Janet Maiden UNISON Health Service Group Executive (pc); Dave Carr UNITE; Gill George UNITE; Pete Gillard UNITE; Sandy Nicoll UNISON Education Service Group Executive (pc); Frank Wood, UNITE Executive; Candy Udwin PCS; Steve Ellis UNISON (pc); Andy Ridley UNISON (pc); Helen Davis UNISON (pc); Rhiannon Lockley, UCU West Midlands; Pat Roche UCU Blackpool and Fylde College; Nadia Felgate, UCU Suffolk New College; Margaret Boyd, UCU NWRC; M. Goligher, UCU; T. O’Connor, UCU; Olga Shapeero, UCU; Rowena Dawson, UCU Retired Members; Mascia Amici, UCU University of Bristol; Joanne Taplin-Green, UCU London School of Economics; Kathryn Rimmington, UCU University of Portsmouth; Angie McConnell, UCU Wigan and Leigh College; Jean Crocker, UCU Teesside University; Maureen Watson, UCU Scotland; Abbie Jenkinson, UNITE UCU Staff; Vicky Knight UCU; Laura Schwartz, UCU Warwick; Claire English UCU Leicester; L van Zyl, Cardiff University; Sarah Mayo, UCU Cardiff Vale College; Ronise Nepomuceno, University of Southampton; Kate Clayton, UCU West Midlands Retired Branch; Vicky Blake, UCU Durham; Maire Daley UCU Liverpool; Ula Nur UCU London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medecine; Cecile Wright, UCU Nottingham Trent University; Sandra Tury, UCU Senate House, University of London; Geraldine Francis, UCU City and Islington College; Kate McClune, UCU; Heidi Lempp, UCU King’s College London; Nadje al-Ali, UCU SOAS; Pat Ross, UCU University of Manchester; Mike Gould, barrister, Stephen Knight, barrister; Russell Fraser, barrister; Brian Richardson, Barrister; Declan Owens; barrister; Kat Craig, barrister; Anna Morris, barrister; Liz Davies, barrister; Robert Atkins, solicitor; Bob Archer, NUT; Lynne Chamberlain, UCU; Glenn Cliff, UNISON; Maggie Fordham, UNISON; Kelly Grant, UNISON; Susan Aitouaziz, NUT; David Tuckwell, GMB; Roger Mackay, NUT; Steve Ballard, NUT; Kirsten Forkert, UCU; Tom Maltby, UNISON; Gary Upton, NASUWT; Tony Hodges, UCU; Val Cane, NUT; Lawrence Wong, NUT; Sara Tomlinson, NUT; Dave Gilchrist, NUT; Chris Line, NASUWT; Alex Paterson, PCS; Robin Coles, PCS; Chris Miller PCS; Rob Thornton, PCS; Andrew Freemantle, PCS; Austin Harney, PCS; Lorna Solomon, UNISON; Ros Constable, UNITE; Mike Roberts UNITE; Keith Johnston, PCS; Fay Westbrook; PCS; Dil Joski, PCS; Dave Bowler, UCATT; Leslie Johnson, GMB; Ceclie Low, UCU;

Signatures from Ireland
Richard Boyd Barrett, People Before Profit/United Left Alliance TD, Dun Laoghaire
Joe Higgins, Socialist Party/United Left Alliance TD, Dublin West
Councillor Brid Smith, People Before Profit/ULA, Dublin City Council
Clare Daly, Socialist Party/ULA  TD, Dublin North
Paul Murphy, Socialist Party/ ULA,  MEP Dublin
Eamonn McCann, Journalist and author.

Sign the petition here:http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/egyptsolidarity/

6 thoughts on “Egypt: Solidarity with Alaa and the Maspero accused

  1. Pingback: UK: Solidarity for N30 from Tahrir … Solidarity for Tahrir from N30 | MENA Solidarity Network

  2. Pingback: Egypt: Independent Union Federation joins Tahrir sit-in | MENA Solidarity Network

  3. Freedom for Alaa. We need democracy. Democracy is not to tell what you believe Only.
    But to be able to accept other ideas and understandings EVEN if it contradicts to my own.
    Religion is for GOD & our EGYPT is for all.

  4. Pingback: L’amore ai tempi della rivoluzione | Yalla Italia

  5. Pingback: Egypt: Alaa released but activists warn of new attacks on revolutionaries | MENA Solidarity Network

  6. Pingback: Egypt: Maspero sit-in supports media workers’ struggle | MENA Solidarity Network

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