Strike leaders from Suez Steel are still being pursued by police, after the factory’s owner, Lebanese businessman Rafiq Daou, demanded their arrest and prosecution. Two workers from the factory were arrested by the Egyptian Army on 12 August, after armoured cars and riot police surrounded the plant. They were later released on bail, but four of their colleagues were arrested by the police on 20 August.
Striking workers in Egypt are facing increasing state repression. Charges against strikers often include accusations of criminal damage, assault against police officers and “aggression against the right to work”. A law brought in by the military in the wake of Mubarak’s downfall in 2011 sets stiff penalties for strikes including large fines and imprisonment.
What you can do:
- Rush messages of protest to General Abd-al-Fattah al-Sisi, Commander in Chief of the Egyptian Armed Forces, demanding the immediate release of arrested workers from Suez Steel, and call for all charges against them to be dropped. Email General al-Sisi here firstname.lastname@example.org copy in Kamal Abu Aita, Minister of Labour (email@example.com) and the Egyptian Ambassador to the UK (firstname.lastname@example.org) or your country.
- Send messages of solidarity to the Suez Steel workers by leaving a comment under this article
- Sign the emergency statement against the military crackdown on protests in Egypt