Published: 07 November 2017 Author: Stefan Talmon
On 3 July 2013, the Egyptian military removed democratically elected President Mohammed Morsi from power and suspended the constitution. Since the military takeover of government and the assumption of the presidency by Field Marshall Abdel Fattah el-Sisi a year later, Egypt has seen a large-scale crackdown on dissent and the followers of former president Morsi. According to media reports hundreds have been killed, tens of thousands have been detained, and many have been forcibly disappeared.
In response to his own son vanishing in 2013, Egyptian lawyer Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy co-founded the Association of the Families of the Disappeared in Egypt. He also assisted the family of Giulio Regeni, an Italian PhD student who was found tortured and killed in Cairo in February 2016.
On 10 September 2017, Mr. Metwally Hegazy disappeared at Cairo International Airport before boarding a flight to Geneva, where he was to report on enforced disappearances in Egypt at the invitation of the United Nation Human Right’s Council’s Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances. He reappeared two days later before the High State Security Prosecutor being charged with founding and leading an organization that was created illegally, spreading false news, and communicating with foreign entities in order to undermine national security. He has since been detained in the high-security wing of Egypt’s notorious Tora prison. (more…)