Daily Archives: 22/09/2017

Egypt: Torture and ongoing arbitrary detention of Mr. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy

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EGY 003 / 0917 / OBS 099.1

Arbitrary detention /

Torture and ill-treatment

Egypt
September 22, 2017

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a partnership of FIDH and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), has received new information and requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in Egypt.

New information:

The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources about the torture and ongoing arbitrary detention of Mr. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy, human rights lawyer, Co-founder and Coordinator of the Association of the Families of the Disappeared in Egypt[1]. Mr. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy reportedly also provided legal advice to Giulio Regeni’s family[2].

According to the information received, on September 20, 2017, Egypt’s High State Security Prosecution renewed the preventive detention of Mr. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy for 15 days pending investigation. Mr. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy is being suspected of “founding and leading an organisation that was created illegally” (i.e. the Association of Families of the Disappeared), “spreading false news” and “communicating with foreign entities in order to undermine national security”.

He is currently detained at the ‘Scorpion’ (Al-Aqrab) high security wing of Tora prison complex, in solitary confinement, in a cell with refuse and no electricity. He is being denied access to his lawyers and family.

In addition, during the detention renewal hearing, Mr. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy reported to his lawyers that during his enforced disappearance at State Security premises between September 10 and 12, 2017, he was tortured, including by electrocution.

Mr. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy has been detained since September 10, 2017, when he was forcibly disappeared at Cairo International Airport before boarding a flight to Geneva as he was travelling in response to an invitation by the United Nations Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances (WGEID). Mr. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy was held incommunicado until September 12, 2017 (see background information).

http://www.omct.org/human-rights-defenders/urgent-interventions/egypt/2017/09/d24544/

http://anhri.net/lawyers-democracy-releases-monthly-report-monitoring-democratic-path-august-2017/?lang=en

https://www.frontlinedefenders.org/en/case/ibrahim-metwally-hegazy-arrested

http://www.advocatenvooradvocaten.nl/12876/egypt-arrest-of-lawyer-ibrahim-metwally/

https://secure.amnesty.nl/spoedactie_metwaly (NEDERLANDS)

Turkey: Detention warrant issued for 33 lawyers in Izmir

September 22, 2017

Detention warrant issued for 33 lawyers who are the members of Izmir Bar Association on Friday (22 September); 24 lawyers were taken into custody and police operation goes on for the remaining 9 lawyers.

With this last wave of crackdown against lawyers, number of lawyers under criminal prosecution raised to 1380; 538 of them have been arrested.

Operation came a day after 14 lawyers got arrested in Istanbul.

Since 15th July 2016, 94 lawyers were taken into custody and 36 lawyers have been arrested.

Situation in Turkey

As of 22 September 2017, 538 lawyers have been arrested (since 15th July 2016) and 1380 lawyers are under prosecution. Some of the arrested lawyers were subjected torture and ill-treatment.

There has been a relentless campaign of arrests which has targeted fellow lawyers across the country. In 77 of Turkey’s 81 provinces, lawyers have been detained and arrested on trumped-up charges as part of criminal investigations orchestrated by the political authorities and conducted by provincial public prosecutors. 

14 of detained or arrested lawyers are the presidents or former presidents of provincial bars associations.

So far; Erzincan 2nd High Penal Court sentenced lawyers Cemalettin Ozer and Talip Nayir who are (respectively) former president of Erzincan Bar Association and former board member of association 8 years 9 month and 10 years and Eskisehir 2nd High Penal Court sentenced 11 lawyers to range 4 to 12 years imprisonment.

All persecuted lawyers are being charged with terror linked offences such as being member of armed terrorist organisation or to run armed terrorist organisation. Pursuant to Turkish Penal Code, these two offences require 7,5 to 22,5 years imprisonment.

Detention warrant issued for 33 lawyers in Izmir

https://turkeypurge.com/arrest-warrants-issued-for-33-lawyers-11-others

The Philippines: Aquino: impeach raps vs Sereno, Morales a ‘necessary step in perfecting institutions’

September 21, 2017

Former President Benigno Aquino III on Thursday said impeachment cases against his appointees Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno and Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales were “a necessary step in perfecting institutions.”

“I am sure they’ll be able to defend themselves,” Aquino told reporters on the sidelines of an event at the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) Thursday.

Last week, the House of Representatives had ruled that an impeachment complaint against Sereno was sufficient in form and substance.

Lorenzo Gadon, who used to lawyer for former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, filed the complaint against the chief magistrate over her alleged failure to make truthful declarations in her statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN), among other allegations.

Meanwhile, the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption said earlier this month that they were preparing documents for an impeachment complaint against Morales.

“Although I have my opinions about as to their guilt or not, we have to ensure that the rights of everybody are respected and that they are able to present their case and heard by a fair body,” said Aquino, who himself faced several impeachment attempts during his term.

Aquino appointed Sereno as the high court’s 24th chief magistrate in 2012, while he named Morales Ombudsman in 2011.

http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/09/21/17/aquino-impeach-raps-vs-sereno-morales-a-necessary-step-in-perfecting-institutions

https://www.untvweb.com/news/cj-sereno-will-not-resign-amid-impeachment-complaint-spokesman/

https://www.untvweb.com/news/evidences-against-cj-sereno-were-provided-by-sc-employees-atty-gadon/

http://thestandard.com.ph/news/top-stories/247552/-no-need-for-cj-psych-test-.html

http://www.philstar.com/opinion/2017/09/22/1741549/resignation-calls

http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/news/pinoyabroad/626799/pinoys-in-hk-rally-vs-duterte-s-tyrannical-tendencies/story/

http://www.benarnews.org/english/news/philippine/manila-protest-09212017130841.html

http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/932471/sereno-slams-killings-in-imaginary-dialogue-with-ka-pepe-diokno-constitution-war-on-drugs

http://www.philstar.com/headlines/2017/09/23/1741839/sereno-answer-impeachment-case-next-week

http://thestandard.com.ph/opinion/columns/eagle-eyes-by-tony-la-vina/247624/united-for-human-rights-democracy-and-justice.html

http://www.malaya.com.ph/business-news/news/sereno-replies-impeach-case-today

http://thestandard.com.ph/news/top-stories/247781/sereno-gets-chance-to-face-accusers.html

http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/09/28/17/sereno-camp-wants-to-cross-examine-witnesses-vs-chief-justice

India: Attack on advocate : 2 held

September 21, 2017

The Mohali police claimed to have arrested two persons, who had allegedly opened fire on a local advocate in May this year. The accused have been identified as Varinder Singh from Fallewall village, Sangrur, and Jaspreet Singh, alias Bamba, from Daad village, Ludhiana. The police also recovered a .32 pistol, rifle, cartridges, car, laptop, mobile phone and Rs 25,500 in old currency notes from their possession. The police claimed that the accused had opened fire on local advocate Harkishan Singh near Radha Soami Satsang Bhawan when he was on his way to the local district courts at Sector 76. The attackers had also tried to hit the victim with an iron rod before opening the fire. However, the advocate managed to save himself from the attack. The police said during the preliminary investigation, it came out that the accused had attacked the victim after taking money from his brother-in-law, identified as Gurpreet Singh Canada. “Gurpreet’s wife had taken divorce from him and he (Gurpreet) suspected that being an advocate, Harkishan was supporting his wife. Gurpreet had come to Punjab around four months ago. Then he hired the accused to commit the crime,” said the police.

http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/chandigarh/attack-on-advocate-2-held/470467.html

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/chandigarh/murder-bid-cracked-with-arrest-of-two/articleshow/60771656.cms

http://punjabnewsexpress.com/punjab/news/canada-based-nri-plotted-murder-of-his-brother-in-law-in-mohali-punjab-66501.aspx

Turkey: Turkey arrests 14 lawyers over alleged terrorism links

September 22, 2017

Turkey has arrested 14 lawyers whom Ankara accuses of having terrorist ties. The case is related to that of two jailed teachers on hunger strike and adds to an unknown number of lawyers now sitting in Turkish prisons.

Turkish authorities carry away protester in Ankara during the trial against Nuriye Gulmen and Semih Ozakca (Reuters/U. Bektas)

Turkish authorities have arrested 14 lawyers they said are members of an “armed terrorist organization.” The lawyers were among a group of 16 detained last week, although two of those originally detained were later released under judicial control.

The lawyers are accused of having ties to the Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party (DHKP-C), a leftist organization that has carried out violent attacks and is staunchly anti-Western. The government has labeled DHKP-C a terrorist group. The daily newspaper Cumhuriyet, which is critical of the government of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, reported that the lawyers were all from a law firm involved in the defense of two jailed teachers currently on hunger strike.

The teachers, Nuriye Gulmen and Semih Ozakca, were both dismissed from their jobs for alleged ties to DHKP-C in late 2016 as part of the purge that began in the wake of the July 2016 failed coup attempt. After the two were fired, they began protesting in central Ankara on a daily basis before beginning their hunger strike on March 9, 2017. Two months later they were arrested and charged with being members of “an armed terrorist organization,” as well as “making the propaganda for it.”

http://www.dw.com/en/turkey-arrests-14-lawyers-over-alleged-terrorism-links/a-40630649

https://turkeypurge.com/turkey-jails-14-istanbul-lawyers-over-alleged-terror-links

https://www.dailysabah.com/investigations/2017/09/21/14-lawyers-arrested-on-suspected-ties-with-dhkp-c-terrorist-group

https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2017/9/21/turkey-jails-14-lawyers-representing-imprisoned-hunger-striking-teachers

Turkey: Detention of 9 human rights defenders in Turkey – Law Society of England & Wales

September 21, 2017

LSG logo

On 12th September 2017, the Law Society sent an intervention letter to President Erdogan on the case of detention of 9 human rights defenders in Turkey.

In the letter, the Law Society expressed its concern over the ongoing detenion fo 9 human rights defenders who were remanded in custody on 6th June adn 5th July 2017. The Law Society had been informed that the detained have been charged with “aiding an armed terrorist organisation”.

Read the full letter below.

http://communities.lawsociety.org.uk/human-rights/interventions/2017/detention-of-9-human-rights-defenders-in-turkey/5062895.article

https://www.turkishminute.com/2017/09/22/detention-warrants-issued-for-44-including-lawyers-over-gulen-links/

Cameroon: Cameroon Letter – Law Society of England and Wales

September 21, 2017

 

LSG logo

On 21st September 2017, the Law Society sent an intervention letter on the ongoing case against lawyers in Cameroon.

Read the full letter below.

 

http://communities.lawsociety.org.uk/human-rights/interventions/2017/cameroon-letter/5062897.article

Tanzania/Kenya: Lissu’s US Trip Now Awaits Medic’s Nod

September 21, 2017

Doctors at the Nairobi Hospital will determine whether Singida East Member of Parliament Tundu Lissu is stable enough to be transferred to the United States for further treatment.

Singida North Member of Parliament Lazaro Nyalandu, who flew to Nairobi on Tuesday, revealed this through a post on his Facebook page.

“It is the third day that we are waiting for Mr Lissu’s medical report from doctors ta Nairobi hospital. We need the report so that we can share with specialists in the US to determine whether Mr Lissu is strong enough to be flown to there,” wrote Mr Nyalandu. Mr Lissu was flown to the Nairobi Hospital after an attempt on his life in Dodoma a few days ago. The gun wounds left him fighting for his life.

The legislator was shot several times by unidentified assailants in the stomach and legs. After Mr Lissu was assaulted, Chadema well-wishers started raising funds to facilitate his treatment. An online fundraising campaign https://www.gofundme.com/Lissumedicalcare was started.

As we went to press a total of $21,890 had been raised through the campaign by 465 well wishers in the past seven days.

On Monday, Chadema director of Foreign Communications and Foreign Affairs John Mrema said the party had raised $30,000 from well-wishers through bank accounts and mobile money banking.

Chadema is working to raise $50,000 (about Sh111.25 million) for the purpose.

http://allafrica.com/stories/201709210063.html

http://www.thecitizen.co.tz/News/Doctors–report-awaited-to-airlift-Tundu-Lissu-to-the-US/1840340-4104104-format-xhtml-83ggig/index.html

https://www.kahawatungu.com/2017/09/18/tanzanians-arrested-donating-blood-tundu-lissu/

https://www.iol.co.za/pretoria-news/tanzania-slaps-two-year-ban-on-critical-weekly-tabloid-11304196

http://communities.lawsociety.org.uk/human-rights/interventions/2017/arrests-and-shooting-of-the-tanganyika-law-society-president/5062896.article

http://allafrica.com/stories/201709220179.html

http://allafrica.com/stories/201709220169.html

http://allafrica.com/stories/201709270103.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tundu_Lissu

https://www.voaswahili.com/a/chadema-yahoji-serikali-inataka-maombi-gani-juu-ya-lissu/4038680.html (SWAHILI)

Turkey/IDHAE: Free Turkish Lawyers Now!

September 21, 2017

Image may contain: 16 people, people smiling, selfie

(L’Observatoire IDHAE Facebook)

“Bu kavga faşizme karşı, bu kavga hürriyet kavgası”
21.09.2017 tarihi itibariyle 14 meslektaşımız günler süren işkenceli gözaltı ve akabinde gerçekleştirilen hukuk müsameresi sonucunda rehin alınmıştır. ÇHD yöneticisi ve üyesi meslektaşlarımızı hedef alan bu saldırı, OHAL karanlığına karşı direnenlerin sesini kısmaya, onları sindirmeye, korkutmaya yöneliktir.
9 günlük gözaltı süresi boyunca derneğimizin yanında olan ve gözaltı sürecini takip eden, sesimize güç katan tüm meslektaşlarımıza ve özelde Özgürlükçü Hukukçular Platformu’na bir kez daha içtenlikle teşekkür ediyoruz. Mesleğimize yönelen bu saldırı karşısında ses çıkarmaktan imtina etmeyen barolara teşekkür ediyoruz. Tutuklanma haberi duyulur duyulmaz, Paris’te, Barselona’da, Amsterdam’da, Madrid’de, Berlin’de, Brüksel’de sokağa çıkan Avrupalı hukuk örgütlerine ve meslektaşlarımıza enternasyonel dayanışmanın bu en güzel örneğini sergiledikleri, yanımızda oldukları için teşekkür ediyoruz. Biliyoruz ki bu karanlığı ancak bu şekilde, hep birlikte dövüşerek aşacağız. Dayanışmamız, bütün bu saldırıların aşılmasının önemli anahtarlarından biri olacaktır.
Meslektaşlarımız tutuklandığı andan bu yana, tutuklanan meslektaşları hakkında ağzını açıp tek kelime etmeyen, meslektaşlarının işkenceye uğramasına, mesleki faaliyetleri nedeniyle hapsedilmesine sessiz kalan Birlik Başkanı Feyzioğlu’nu ise avukat kamuoyunun aklına ve vicdanına havale ediyoruz.
Yargılanan avukatlık pratiğimizdir!
Meslektaşlarımıza sorulan sorular, bu operasyonun gerisindeki motivasyonu şüpheye yer bırakmayacak bir biçimde gözler önüne sermiştir: “Neden Nuriye ve Semih’in avukatlığını yapıyorsunuz?”, “Soma’da ne işiniz vardı?”, “Sur’a neden gittiniz?” … Bu sorular da göstermektedir ki sorgulanmak, hapsedilmek istenen tek tek meslektaşlarımız değil ama bir avukatlık pratiği, ÇHD’nin geleneğidir.
Meslektaşlarımız bu sorulara yalın ve tereddütsüz bir biçimde yanıt vermiştir. Tutuklandığı sırada açlık grevinin 29. gününde olan Engin Gökoğlu’nun yanıtı, bütün diğer meslektaşlarımızın tutumunun da bir özeti niteliğindedir: “Haksızlığa, hukuksuzluğa karşı adalet, devrim ve sosyalizm için mücadele etmeye devam edeceğim”.
Gelinen yerde artık asıl mesele, bu aynı sorulara bizlerin vereceği yanıttır. ÇHD kapatıldığında da söylemiştik; ÇHD geleneği, baskı ile, zulümle, devlet terörü ile bitirilebilecek bir gelenek değildir. Nuriye ve Semih’in avukatlığını yapmaya devam edeceğiz. Soma’da işçi emekçilerin yanında olmaya devam edeceğiz. Sur’da, Cizre’de, saklamaya çalıştığınız kirli suçlarınızın üzerine gitmeye, Kürt halkı ile dayanışmayı büyütmeye devam edeceğiz. Hepsinin yanında, nefes alan her canlıyı suskunluğa boğmaya çalıştığınız bu faşizm ortamında, ses olmaya, sokakta olmaya, direnenlere güç vermeye, direnmeye, dövüşmeye devam edeceğiz.
Saygılarımızla,
22.09.2017
Çağdaş Hukukçular Derneği

http://www.ankarabarosu.org.tr/HaberDuyuru.aspx?BASIN_ACIKLAMASI&=1101 (TURKCE)