Tag Archives: Egypt

Egypt: Beaten and Threatened for Defending Women’s Rights

September 18, 2019

Women’s Center for Guidance and Legal Awareness head Reda Eldanbouki (Courtesy photo)

Reda Eldanbouki is a lawyer and the head of the Women’s center for Guidance and Legal Awareness in Egypt. He leads the battle for human and women’s rights and fights FGM in Egypt. He’s also a dear and close friend of Clarion.

A few days ago, Eldanbouki was brutally attacked while trying to save a young woman from being abused by her family.

The incident happened in the city of Mansoura, located northeast of Cairo. Eldanbouki got a phone call from a 25-year-old student who said, “Please, I need help! My parents won’t let me to go to my university! They won’t even let me leave the house. I’m a student in the faculty of sciences. They say it’s because I’ll have relations with a guy and I’ll bring them shame.”

Right after Eldanbouki took down her name and address, he heard screaming. The phone suddenly went dead.

Eldanbouki later found out that besides the fact that this young woman was dating a man who she had chosen (not her family), the girl was enmeshed in a battle with her family from whom she was demanding her inheritance rights.

Egyptian law allows women rights of inheritance. But not only are these laws not implemented, most men block female family members from receiving any of their rightful inheritance.

Without hesitation, Eldanbouki jumped in his car and sped to the young woman’s house. He knew calling the police would be worthless as they wouldn’t help in a situation like this. The young woman’s family also must have figured this out, because when he arrived, four male family members were waiting for him.

They grabbed him and dragged him to the fourth floor of the house where they tied his hands behind his back and bound his legs.

Beaten and Threatened for Defending Women’s Rights

UN/China/Iran/Egypt etc: Many states inflict ‘serious cruelty’ on rights activists – U.N

September 19, 2019

Many states inflict 'serious cruelty' on rights activists - U.N

One-quarter of U.N. member states have carried out suspected reprisals against activists who cooperate with the world body on human rights issues, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Thursday.

China, Egypt, Iran, and Vietnam were among states named in his annual report who rejected the allegations during a two-hour debate at the U.N. Human Rights Council.

“Acts of serious cruelty have continuously been reported against those who dare to come to the UN or share information with us – incommunicado detention, torture and ill-treatment, prolonged solitary confinement, and even deaths in custody,” Andrew Gilmour, U.N. Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, told the Geneva forum in presenting the report.

Their family members, legal representatives, and witnesses were also being targeted, he said.

In China, activists and lawyers reported having been “targeted for attending training sessions” or engaging with U.N. human rights instruments, the report said.

“Reprisals reportedly included detention and prison sentences, ill-treatment while in detention, seizure of property and surveillance,” it said.

It cited five cases including human rights lawyer Liu Zhengqing whom the government said in January had been disbarred on the grounds that his public defence statements had endangered national security.




Egypt: Detention Renweed for Another 45 Days for Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy

September 12, 2019


On 10 September 2019, the Criminal Court of Cairo rejected an appeal from human rights defender Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy, and renewed his detention for an additional 45 days.

On 2 May 2018, Cairo Criminal Court ordered the detention of Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy for 45 days pending further investigation. On 4 December 2017, the detention of human rights defender Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy was extended for a further 15 days, pending investigation by the prosecution. He is currently being held in Aqrab Prison, where he has reported poor detention conditions, lack of adequate food, and lack of adequate medical testing for his anaemia.

Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy is a co-founder and the coordinator of the Association of the Families of the Disappeared in Egypt, a network of individuals whose loved ones have been subjected to enforced or involuntary disappearances. Ibrahim Metwally Hegazy became an active human rights defender working on the issue of enforced disappearances after the disappearance of his son Amr Ibrahim Metwally, who went missing on 8 July 2013. The human rights defender is the attorney in the case of Giulio Regeni, an Italian national who was killed in Egypt under suspicious circumstances. Since 2014, Ibrahim Hegazy has been actively lobbying Egyptian authorities on the issue of enforced disappearances in Egypt.




Egypt/UN/EU: Open Letter to EU Member States Ahead of the Universal Periodic Review of Egypt

September 17, 2019

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Your Excellency,

The next Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Egypt’s human rights record is scheduled for 13 November 2019, under the auspices of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. We are writing to strongly urge your government to use this occasion to address the ongoing human rights crisis in Egypt.

Since the last review of Egypt’s record in 2014, human rights violations have increased sharply and the undersigned organisations and our partners have documented unprecedented levels of repression against human rights organisations and human rights defenders. The UPR is an opportunity for States to contribute to reversing these trends and promoting respect for human rights in Egypt.

We urge your government to take part in the UPR process and to make concrete recommendations to the Egyptian authorities to urgently address the following issues:

Immediately and unconditionally release all human rights defenders, civil society activists and all those detained or imprisoned solely for exercising their rights to freedom of expression, assembly and association, including lawyers, journalists, labour rights activists, minority rights activists, and LGBTQI activists. Put a stop to excessive police probation measures and the use of prolonged pre-trial detention to punish dissenters, close Case 173/2011 against Egyptian NGOs and lift arbitrary travel bans on human rights defenders.




Egypt/Liberia: Egypt denies 10, 000 lawyers visa for AfBA conference

September 2, 2019

African Bar Association

Following an alleged denial of visa to 10,000 lawyers for this year’s African Bar Association (AfBA) by the Egyptian’s government, the association at the weekend, shifted the 2019 annual conference earlier scheduled to hold at the Triumph Luxury Hotel, Cairo, Egypt from 2nd to 5th September 2019 to Monrovia, the capital of Liberia.

This followed an alleged refusal by the Egyptian government to grant entry visas to over 80 per cent of the participants across the continent, including prominent Bar leaders and lawyers.

However, Cairo’s loss is now Monrovia’s gain as the Government of Liberia under President George Weah has offered to host the 2019 AfBA annual conference.

The rescheduled conference would hold between 20th and 25th October, 2019.


In a release by AfBA’s Special Adviser (Media and Publicity), Osa Director, President Weah would declare the conference open on 21st October, 2019 with over 10,000 lawyers expected from the various Bar associations and law societies on the continent.

Meanwhile, top government functionaries and business leaders are also expected to graze the event with the theme: Tackling contemporary issues facing the continent; How lawyers can drive a renaissance.


Liberia Bar Association to Host African Bar Conference





OIAD/France: Un observatoire pour les avocats en danger

le 9 août, 2019

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De longue date, les avocats parisiens ont su mettre en avant leur engagement pour le respect des droits de la défense et la protection de leurs confrères. En France bien sûr, mais aussi à l’étranger avec une tradition d’échanges avec les avocats du monde entier. Un travail qu’accomplit aujourd’hui l’Observatoire international des avocats en danger.

Il semble inconcevable d’imaginer un système juridique qui fait valoir les droits de tous les justiciables sans se représenter le rôle de l’avocat. Si son intégrité et son indépendance paraissent être le minimum requis pour qu’il puisse exercer son métier, ces fondamentaux ne sont hélas pas toujours respectés à travers le monde. Avocats assassinés, emprisonnés ou persécutés, les exemples d’atteinte violente à la profession ne manquent pas, de la Turquie à la Chine en passant par l’Égypte, le Mexique ou l’Inde. À ce sujet, le rapport 2018 de l’Institut des droits de l’Homme des avocats européens (IDHAE) ne dénombrait d’ailleurs pas moins de 379 avocats « en danger parce qu’ils tentent de faire leur métier ».

Une thématique sur laquelle le barreau de Paris s’engage également : le 22 mai dernier était organisée une présentation débat autour du rapport de Human Rights Watch : « Des avocats traduits en justice : poursuites abusives et érosion du droit à un procès équitable en Turquie », à la maison du Barreau à Paris. Une rencontre qui faisait écho à un autre événement mis en place par les avocats parisiens le 24 janvier, la Journée internationale de l’avocat en danger, qui était justement consacrée à la situation turque cette année. Le 11 avril dernier encore, c’était Shirin Ebadi qui était accueillie. Avocate et juge iranienne, Prix Nobel de la paix, elle a dû fuir son pays en 2009 en raison de son combat pour les des droits de l’Homme et vit depuis en exil. Toutes ces actions sont menées sous la bannière de l’Observatoire international des avocats en danger (OIAD), une initiative lancée conjointement avec le CNB et deux barreaux étrangers en 2015 pour défendre les avocats menacés au cours de l’exercice de leur métier. L’Observatoire effectue un travail de veille et d’information pour tenter d’enrayer les atteintes au droit à la défense à travers le monde. Avec une structure qui se veut inclusive et ouverte à tous les barreaux, il a déjà été rejoint par 30 d’entre eux en qualité de membre actif.

Entretien croisé avec Basile Ader, vice-bâtonnier du barreau de Paris, et Anne Souleliac, administratrice de l’OIAD.

Un observatoire pour les avocats en danger


Egypt: Ezzat Ghoneim produced before the court

August 28, 2019


After having been disappeared for nearly five months, human rights defender Ezzat Ghoneim was produced before the Criminal Court of Tura on 9 February 2019. He continues to be held in preventive detention, which is being renewed every 45 days. The human rights defender is facing charges of “defamation” and “joining an illegal group”.

Human rights defender Ezzat Ghoneim disappeared from Al Haram police station 10 days after he was granted conditional release on 4 September 2018. He remained unlawfully detained until 13 September 2018, when police officers informed his wife of his alleged release.

On 4 September, Cairo Criminal Court ordered the release of Ezzat Ghoneim on bail.

On 9 May, the State Security Prosecutor renewed the detention of Ezzat Ghoneim for an additional 15 days pending investigation.

On 4 March human rights lawyer and executive director of the Egyptian Coordination for Rights and Freedoms (ECRF), Ezzat Ghoneim, was detained by State Security in Cairo.

Ezzat Ghoneim is a human rights defender and lawyer focusing on fair trial guarantees and enforced disappearances. Since 2014, he has served as executive director of the Egyptian Coordination for Rights and Freedoms (ECRF), an Egyptian human rights organisation which works on arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances, freedom of expression, medical negligence and torture inside prisons.


Committee for Justice gets UN support for the case of human rights defender “Ezzat Ghoneim”





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