Documento - Egypt: Detainee case studies – available for media interviews
20 April 2011
AI Index: MDE 12/031/2011
Egypt: Detainee case studies – available for media interviews
YAHYA MOHAMMED KHALAFALLAH ALI (available for interview – Arabic lang)
Yahya Mohammed Khalafallah Ali was first arrested in 1993 in connection with his alleged membership of Talai’ al-Fatah (Vanguards of the Conquest), a banned Islamist organization, and sentenced by a military court to six years in prison. After serving his prison sentence he was issued with a detention order and detained until his release on 19 February 2011.
He told Amnesty International that when arrested in 1993 he was held incommunicado and tortured, including by being beaten and given electric shocks to sensitive parts of his body. Although he presented a medical report that he was tortured and was questioned about torture by the Public Prosecutor then, no SSI officer or other officials were investigated in relation to his torture allegations. He told Amnesty International that he intends to obtain new copies of reports, file a new torture complaint and hold those responsible to account.
MOHAMED ABD REHIM EL-SHARKAWI
(available for interview via son who speaks English)
Mohamed Abd Rehim El-Sharakawi was held in administrative detention for 16 years, a period which saw his health deteriorate. He was first detained following forcible return from Pakistan in 1995. Shortly after an emergency court acquitted him of all charges against him; including conspiracy, unauthorized possession of firearms and forgery. Despite his acquittal and securing 20 court orders for his release he was not released till 17 March 2011.
Mohamed has three slipped discs in his lower back and two in his neck, causing a lot of pain, and inflammation of the colon. He was twice prescribed physiotherapy sessions which security officers ensured he missed by delaying the departure of the vehicle scheduled to take him. In 2010, he was taken to al-Kharga Hospital and promised surgery but this did not materialize. Mohamed has gone on hunger strike several times to protest against his ill-treatment and denial of medical care and made complaints to the office of the Public Prosecutor, all to no avail. In 2008 he was transferred to a prison 730km from his family home in Cairo, and denied visits for six months.
With each court order for his release he was transferred to al-Kharga SSI premises for a week or so before being sent back to Wadi El-Gedid prison. He decided to stop making appeals as the transfers between the prison and the SSI detention centre caused him so much pain. In June 2010, Mohamed Abd Rehim El-Sharkawi and 59 others went on hunger strike in Wadi El-Gedid Prison to protest the torture and ill-treatment of some of them by the prison authorities.
AHMED ZAKI AL-GAMMAL (available for interview – Arabic lang)
Ahmed Zaki al-Gammal, 31, a sales executive in Dubai, was first arrested in the middle of the night at his father’s home in Ain Shams in April 2008. He and his Chechen wife, Sayana Ruslanovna Khadaeva, were taken an SSI facility in Nasr city. His father questioned his son’s arrest, given that he had just returned from working in UAE and had not previously had any problems.
He was simply told that the SSI needed the couple.
His father also requested information about the fate of his son from the Public Prosecutor, the Interior Minister, the SSI Director, and the SSI office in Madinet al-Salam, Ain Shams. A full 90 days after the arrest, the father received an anonymous phone call informing him that his son was detained at Istiqbal Tora Prison. When his father visited Ahmed told him that he had been tortured, including with electric shocks and beatings. Despite several court orders for his release Ahmed remained in administrative detention at Tora High Security Prison, until his release on 23 March 2011. He told Amnesty International that he will file a case against those involved in his torture, and demand justice and reparation for his years in detention.
“My son also lost his job in the Emirates and he lost all his money! And he will lose his career! And he will lose his health! All this without any accusation…”
Letter to Amnesty International by Galal Zaki al-Gammal, father of detainee Ahmed Zaki al-Gammal, received 22 January 2008.