June 20, 2017
URGENT APPEAL – THE OBSERVATORY
EGY 001 / 0617 / OBS 066
Arrest /Arbitrary detention /Ill-treatment
The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a partnership of FIDH and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in Egypt.
Description of the situation:
The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources about the arrest, arbitrary detention and ill-treatment of Mr. Tarek Hussein (known as Tito), human rights activist and lawyer at the Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights (ECESR).
According to the information received, on June 17, 2017, at dawn fifteen masked officers and plain clothes officers from the Central Security Forces stormed out Mr. Tarek Hussein’s house, arrested him and confiscated his laptop and cell phone. During his arrest, Mr. Tarek Hussein requested to see the arrest warrant but was not shown any and was physically and verbally assaulted instead, including upon his arrival at Khanka’s police station.
He was subsequently brought before the Al-Khanka District Prosecution, where he was accused of “joining an illegal organization” and “calling for a protest”.
On June 18, 2017, the Al-Khanka District Prosecution ordered Mr. Tarek Hussein’s release on a 2000 EGP (approx. 99 euros) bail, which has been duly paid. However, as of publication of this appeal the latter had not been released yet and is still held at Khanka’s police station.
In addition, allegations of ill-treatment including physical and verbal assault were reported while in detention. It has been reported that Mr. Tarek Hussein is being detained in poor conditions which include sharing an overcrowded cell with eighty co-detainees, and being denied food and changing clothes for two consecutive days. Mr. Hussein’s relatives, who have been in contact with the prison’s authorities, were told that “he deserves to die”.
Mr. Tarek Hussein’s arrest and arbitrary detention occur amidst protest over Tiran and Sanafir islands’ transfer to Saudi Arabia, which he has been vocally opposing.
The Observatory is extremely concerned about the ongoing arbitrary detention of Mr. Tarek Hussein despite the Court order to release him on bail. The Observatory believes his arrest and arbitrary detention are linked to his human rights activities and consequently urges Egyptian authorities to immediately and unconditionally release him, and withdraw the accusations against him.
A letter to the head of the lawyers’ syndicate from the lawyer, and vice-secretary of Freedom in Al Dostour Party, Tarek Hussien, detained since the dawn of Sunday despite a prosecutor’s decree to release him on bail: [Translation]
Mr. Sameh Ashour, head of the lawyers’ syndicate, my warmest greetings. I write these words to you on the fifth day of my detention by the Ministry of Interior and the third day of my illegal detention despite the general prosecutor’s decision to release me on bail on Sunday June 18th 2017. Before I tell you what happened during these days may I remind you of your words to us during the pledge ceremony for the new members of the syndicate “A lawyer cannot be lower in standing than a judge or a deputy prosecutor, as we are partners in the justice system”.
On the first day of my detention I was blindfolded for four hours and during the interrogation I was asked about my job so I said I am a lawyer and I am registered in the lawyers’ syndicate as they replied “syndicate… let the syndicate do you any good then”. On the second day and after my return to Al Khanka police station after the prosecution’s decision to release me I was assaulted and beaten by one of the junior officers in the station. When he found out I was a lawyer he increased his insults. On the fourth day I spent 19 hours in an inhumane transport van that took me at 6:00 am from Al Khanka police station to New Banha court to Abu Zabal Prison to Al Khalifa detention then to Zainhoum court and then to Al Salam police station then to Al Marg police station and finally it arrived in Ain Shams police station at 1 am. 19 continuous hours of torment while I tumbled inside a metal box that is melting under a harsh sun after days of deprivation from food, water and rest. As a result I vomited blood more than once.
After the prosecutions’ decree to release me on bail on Sunday June 18, 2017, Al Khanka police station decided to prevent the execution of the decree in realization of the threats of some of the officers to keep me detained for a long time and prevent me from spending Bairam with my family. Consequently they discovered a variety of charges against several people who share my name in the municipalities of Cairo, Giza, Alexandria and Marsa Matrouh! They alleged that they are verdicts against me and with an insidious frameup they tormented me by my putting me on “rounds” to the stations of Ain Shams, Al Daher, Imbaba, Al Marg, Nasr City, Al Montaza in Alexandria and Al Hamam in Marsa Matrouh to prove that I am not the alleged accused. It is crystal clear that these verdicts have nothing to do with me and some of them go back to when I was a child of five years old! Another of them accuses me of profligacy of martial assets when I was fifteen years!
Dear Mr. Head of Syndicate, I regress to remind you of what you said to us during the pledge ceremony “A lawyer cannot be lower in standing than a judge or a deputy prosecutor, as we are partners in the justice system” and I ask you to exercise every possible effort to implement it in reality and that the syndicate should move to stop this insidious plot unlawfully targeting a lawyer who is registered in your syndicate and to empower me with my legal rights to release as soon as possible so I could spend Bairam with my family, which is the least I deserve.
Lawyer/ Tarek Hussien
http://www.idhae.org/observatoire-fr-page4.1.egy180617.htm (FRANCAIS, SIGNEZ LA PETITION!)
المحامي الحقوقي طارق حسين لا يزال قيد الاحتجاز التعسفي منذ 17 يونيو، بالرغم من صدور قرار بإخلاء سبيله.