Egypt: Rights activists appear in Egyptian custody weeks after their disappearance

November 21, 2018

Group includes prominent human rights lawyer Hoda Abdelmonem, who was snatched from her home as part of Sisi’s crackdown on dissent

Prominent Egyptian human rights lawyer Hoda Abdelmonem, whose whereabouts have not been known for 21 days since police raided her home, appeared at Cairo’s National Security Prosecution headquarters on Wednesday, her family told Middle East Eye.

Abdelmonen, 60, was taken from her home to an undisclosed location in the early hours of 1 November by security forces that had turned her flat upside down, in what rights groups have described as unlawful “enforced disappearance”.

She was one of at least 19 activists and human rights defenders targeted by authorities that day, according to Amnesty International.

Abdelmonen’s daughter, Gehad Khaled, confirmed to MEE that lawyers saw Abdelmonem and several other female activists at the headquarters of the National Security Prosecution in Cairo on Wednesday, but that no charges have been brought against them yet.

Those who appeared alongside her include charity worker Somaya Nassef, who was arrested on the same day as Abdelmonem.

The lawyers who spoke to Khaled did not confirm the names of other activists who appeared. They may either be released or face charges, the lawyers told Abdelmonen’s family.

At least 40 other rights workers, activists and lawyers have been rounded up since late October and held incommunicado by Egyptian security forces, according to Human Rights Watch.

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