Egypt frees jailed torture rights activists: lawyers

Two activists in Egypt who were arrested in October while campaigning against torture have been released, their lawyers said on Sunday.

Egypt frees jailed torture rights activists: lawyers
Mohammed al-Dereini, who heads the Shiite Supreme Council for the Care of the Prophet's Family, was released on Saturday while Ahmed Sobh, who runs the Imam Ali Centre for Human Rights, was freed on November 25, the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) and the Hisham Mubarak Law Centre (HMLC) said in a joint statement.

Dereini, held on October 1, was charged with "spreading false rumours and inciting propaganda that could promote terror amongst people, disturb public security and the rule of law and undermine the trust in security agencies through claiming that prisoners and detainees died as a result of torture in prisons."

Dereini, who had already spent 15 months in prison in 2004-2005 for belonging to an illegal organisation, has also published a book called "Hell's Capital" which focuses on torture.

Dereini and Sobh had also given separate interviews in which they said there was widespread torture of Islamist detainees in Egyptian jails.

Their detention drew sharp criticism from local and international rights groups.

According to the London-based human rights organisation Amnesty International, torture in Egyptian detention centres is systematic, and in most cases the perpetrators are never brought to justice.

Egypt says any cases of torture reported in its prisons are isolated and that charges are brought against those who use it.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 03 Aralık 2007, 10:04