Activist Rami Shaath tells the conditions of his imprisonment and the story of a doctor and a taxi driver who shared the cell with him

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Activist Rami Shaath tells the conditions of his imprisonment and the story of a doctor and a taxi driver who shared the cell with him

AP

The Egyptian-Palestinian activist, Rami Shaath, described the conditions of his imprisonment in Egypt and told the stories of detainees who shared a cell with him. He also spoke about the party that pressured his release.

In an interview published today, Wednesday, by the French newspaper “Le Monde”, following his arrival in Paris on January 8, after more than 900 days in prison, Shaath said that he was being held with 1,800 prisoners, “none of whom were arrested for violent crimes,” but “they are all there against the background of opinion issues.

He stated that while the prisoners in the early days were divided between “revolutionary activists”, “NGO activists” and “ordinary people without any particular political affiliation” as well as “Islamists sympathizers”, “the nature of the prisoners began to change since 2020.” “People without a political past, who are detained completely arbitrarily, have become the majority.”

He referred to a surgeon who was arrested because one of his sons was humming a song at school that included a nickname given by the opposition to President Sisi, and a taxi driver imprisoned for a year and a half on charges of “complaining about the high fuel prices.”

Shaath considered that “the message of the authority is simple: if you open your mouth, you are finished. Egypt is a banana republic based on fear,” explaining that he was accused of “engaging in a terrorist organization,” without specifying the organization, stressing that he was imprisoned because of his “political struggle.”

He said he lived for two-and-a-half years in a cramped 23-square-meter room “with crumbling walls, a simple blanket to sleep in, and a hole in the floor as a toilet and a shower with cold water,” but that he was never tortured.

He added that “France played a major role” in his release, but “it can and must do more” than handing over lists of imprisoned personalities to the Egyptian authorities, stressing that “there are thousands of other lesser known detainees, but they equally deserve to be released from prison, regardless regardless of their political leanings.

Source: “AFP”





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