The Arabist

The Arabist

By Issandr El Amrani and friends.

New Torture Cases

From the Shebab Kifaya mailing list. Haven't verified the information or obtained the victim's full and informed consent to publish the details here, so names and details redacted for the moment:
Citizen [...], known by [...] was subject to severe beating and use of electricity on sensitive parts of his body at the state security intelligence headquarters in the city of [...] by the hands of officer [...]. [...] had been arrested in the early hours of the [...] from his house in the district of [...] in the city of [...], Gharbeyya governorate in the Delta of Egypt.

[...] woke up at about 2 a.m. upon a heavy knocking at his door. As soon as he opened the door the police was all over the house. [...] asked for the prosecutor's permit to search the house, upon which the state security officer reached into his pocket, got out a small piece of paper, which [...] did not read, returned it back into his pocket again and said: "This is the permit. And even if there is no permit, I shall detain you as I wish". The police then took [...] down into the police car, then went up again in arms to search his house causing panic to his wife and children. The police took school books and botebooks of the children, a praying carpet, a computer which was searched by the officer himself at the state security office in violation of the law which states that examination of a computer should be carried out by the technical office upon an order of the prosecution.

As soon as [...] arrived in the state security office in [...] he was beaten, slapped and kicked all over his body by officer [...] and [...]. Then [...] stripped [...] of all his clothes, forced him to the floor on his back with his hands tied and eyes blindfolded. He then put a chair between his legs and used a baton to pressure sensitive parts of his body. While [...] was screaming of pain, officer [...] was laughing and saying: "I shall make you lose your manhood totally. You will sleep with your wife with no difference between the two of you!!"

After 20 hours of torture, [...] was referred to the prosecution charged of membership of the Muslim Brotherhood. His file was registered as administrative case no. [...].

[...]'s lawyer has filed a complaint to the public prosecutor's officer and the National Council for Human Rights.

Perhaps the formal complaint with the prosecutor's office makes this fair game for public distribution, but absent confirmation, and given Imad al-Kabir's momentary retraction of his story in the face of intimidation after the details of his case were publicized, I'm erring on the side of caution.

It's rare for members of the Muslim Brotherhood to face torture these days. Those who do tend to be young, rank-and-file members from the governorates, like this unfortunate man from Gharbeyya. More senior members, and members from Cairo, now generally say they are not physicaly abused in custody.

Update: Hossam reports on another Kifaya anti-torture initiative here.