Sunday, April 13, 2008

631 detainees in Mahalla, 18 ordered released

631 detainees in Mahalla

According to a security source 631 detainees is being held in Mahalla. Out of the 631, 331 is being investigated and the remaining 300 is still in detention.

18 were ordered released in yesterday´s court hearing about the events of 6-7 by the Public Prosecutor.

Could somebody please explain what the additional 300 that are facing any charges are doing in custody still?

Nine photojournalists released and the ¨Caravan of Solidarity

Nasser Nouri, a photographer from Reuters is released together with Ahmed Hamed, a photographer with the independent Egyptian newspaper al Fajr , and camera men from Dream TV and Orbit. All of them Egyptian. They were detained while covering the ¨Caravan of Solidarity¨ made up of 25 professors, doctors and activists going to Mahalla last Friday, with food and medicine , trying to meet with the families of the detainee´s. The caravan was stopped by police 30 Km´s outside of Mahalla, not allowed to enter the town and later escorted back to Cairo, in a reverse ¨Caravan of Police¨.

Dr Aida Seif al Dawla one of the members of the ¨Caravan of solidarity¨ on trying to go there again:

¨Activists, like Aida Seif Al-Dawla, are vowing that they will eventually get to Mahalla despite the government's efforts to limit access to the area. "Oh yes, we'll go back. We'll go back and we'll get those testimonies, and we'll visit those hospitals. We are going back. This is definite¨

And Dr Seif al Dawla´s comment on the situation:

"We are ruled by a government which thinks it is degrading that they respond to the demands and rights of their people - the people that should be governing. And eventually this can only end in things like Mahalla… so it tells me that the situation is very tense, that we have a terrified government, that we have pathetic political parties and that people are taking initiative in their hands,"

James Buck is released and has boarded a plane, en route to the States. His Egyptian translator/friend, Mohammed Salah Ahmed Marei is seemingly still in police custody. Read James statement on his friend here

George Ishaq relased on bail

As stated on this blog earlier George Ishaq was released on a 10 000 E.P bail, pending trial that could render up to a 10 year sentence. One other faces the usual 15 days of detention ( probably Sami Farnasis and the third awaits the medical comittee´s opinion on weather he´s capable of facing detention(probably Fathi Hafnawi).

Human Rights Watch raised severe critique toward the way the police has handled the situation in Mahalla. Amnesty International does the same, and both shows concern about the arrests of the Kefaya leaders.

Reporters without Borders calls for release of bloggers

Reporters without Borders calls for the release of bloggers Muhammed al Sharqawi, Esraá abd al Fattah and Karim al Beheiri. Esraa was of course the one who started the 6th of April group on Facebook, which managed to attract 65 000 members in the two weeks prior to the manifestation.

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