This is an article from the current issue of Middle East Solidarity magazine – help us continue our work by donating £2 for a digital copy online
Tens of thousands of prisoners remain at risk of Covid 19 in Egypt’s overcrowded and insanitary jails, while their families have been denied visiting rights and information about their condition.
Political prisoners such as Alaa Abdelfattah, Patrick Zaki, Hisham Fouad, Mahienour el-Masry and Haitham Mohamedain are among those still detained.
Family members asking for information from inside the prison system have been assaulted and beaten, Egyptian activists report.
Laila Soueif, mother of Alaa Abdelfattah and his sisters Mona and Sanaa were attacked while spending the night outside Tora prison on 22 June. When they went to report the assault to General Prosecutor the next day, Sanaa was seized by plain clothes police and herself detained.
Bologna University graduate student Patrick Zaki, who was arrested on 7 February had his detention renewed on 2 July for a further 45 days. Like Alaa Abdelfattah his family have not heard from him since the middle of March.
Meanwhile doctors and pharmacists who have questioned the Egyptian government’s handling of the Covid 19 pandemic are the latest group to face a crackdown – at least 9 were arrested between March and June.
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