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:: Issues > Prisoners of Conscience
Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood Arrests; Torturers Punished; Other Developments
An Egyptian court sentenced three police officers to seven years and a fourth officer to three years in prison on November 28 for beating a man to death during interrogation. Under Egyptian law, the sentence for torturing a prisoner ranges between three and fifteen years in prison. Earlier this month, two police officers were sentenced to three years in prison for sexually assaulting a man at a police station. Click here for more information.
Wednesday, December 19,2007 06:38
Carnegie Endowment
Egyptian police forces arrested thirteen senior members of the Muslim Brotherhood on December 4. They face accusations of belonging to a banned organization, conspiracy against the government, and holding a meeting to plan illicit activities. Authorities also arrested eleven al-Azhar University students affiliated with the Brotherhood on December 6 and twenty-five other Brotherhood members in the Delta region on November 19. Twelve Egyptian human rights organizations and legal associations issued a joint statement on November 20 criticizing Egyptian authorities’ actions and press silence about the arrest campaign. Approximately 400 Brotherhood members are now in detention, most of them without charge or trial, since a crackdown that began a year ago.

An Egyptian court sentenced three police officers to seven years and a fourth officer to three years in prison on November 28 for beating a man to death during interrogation.  Under Egyptian law, the sentence for torturing a prisoner ranges between three and fifteen years in prison. Earlier this month, two police officers were sentenced to three years in prison for sexually assaulting a man at a police station. Click here for more information.

President Mubarak referred to parliament on November 28 a draft law banning demonstrations in places of worship. The “Law to Preserve the Sanctity of Places of Worship” was passed to the Shura Council on December 4 and will then be sent to the People’s Assembly. The law sets punishment of up to one year in prison and fines of 1000-5000 Egyptian pounds (US$182-910) for organizers of a demonstration and up to six months in prison and fines of 500-2000 pounds (US$91-264) for participants. The law is expected to face opposition in the People’s Assembly, especially from Muslim Brotherhood MPs who hold eighty-eight out of 454 seats.

In elections to the Egyptian Syndicate of Journalists held on November 17, pro-government editor Makram Muhammad Ahmed was elected chairman and other pro-government journalists dominated the syndicate’s council. Ahmed promised to advocate abolishing jail sentences for press offenses. Click here for the Hisham Mubarak Center for Law’s statement on the elections in Arabic.

An Egyptian court sentenced Hatem Mahran, editor of the tabloid al-Naba, on November 27 to a year in prison and ordered him to pay a fine of 20,000 Egyptian pounds (US$3,600) for publishing a revealing photograph of an Egyptian actress. He was released on a five-thousand pound (US$912) bail and vowed to appeal the ruling.

"this commentary is reprinted with permission from the Arab Reform Bulletin. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace."


 


Posted in Prisoners of Conscience , Human Rights , Torture  
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