Egyptian detainees are starting a hunger strike

I was contacted by one of the detainees' wife, who called me this afternoon to say the incarcerated activists will start a hunger strike as the clock strikes midnight today, demanding: a) the examination of Mohamed el-Sharqawi and Kareem al-Sha’er by the Forensics Medical Authorities, b) an investigation into the torture and abuse incidents the two Youth for Change activists were subject to last Thursday, c) the release of all those detained for their solidarity with the judges.

The six detainees who will start the strike are:

1-Kamal Khalil

2-Saher Gad

3-Ahmad Abdel Gawad

4-Karim Mohamed Redda

5-Ihab Mohamed Idriss

6-Sameh Mohamed Said

Two other detainees will join the strike in 48 hours: Nael and Ahmad Maher.

Gamal Abdel Aziz Eid, the director of the Arab Human Rights Information Network who is representing the detainees, confirmed to me Sharqawi and Sha’er have not been medically examined up till now. Eid’s organization, together with four other rights watchdogs, have issued a statement today calling on the interior ministry to investigate the recent arrests and abuses, and accusing the State Security Prosecutor’s office of “complicity� in leaving those who conduct torture to go unpunished.   

On another front, I was told the Press Syndicate refused to host the Liberties’ Committee press conference scheduled for Sunday. Instead, the press conference has been moved to the Lawyers’ Syndicate, and will be held, tomorrow Sunday, at 1:30pm.