Free Khaled Hamza
Free Khaled Hamza
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Egypt's regime has been continuously sidelining due legal processes, resorting to extralegal measures and exploiting emergency law to crackdown on its civil political opponents. Over the past couple of decades, more than 20,000 members of the Muslim Brotherhood alone were detained for a few months then released. Other political opposition groups have also suffered the arrest and detention of their members and influential leaders. Hamza's arrest comes as another step in the wrong direction, and should send negative signals for democracy activists all over the world.
Hamza was arrested shortly after his meeting with the President of the Arab Commission for Human Rights. Over the months preceding his arrest, Hamza has been coordinating with international human rights observers covering massive violations of human rights in Egypt. In the website he runs, Hamza covered a wide range of human rights issues, including torture scandals in police stations, crackdown on free press and bloggers, transferring civilians to military tribunal and prolonging the detention of political activists who receive acquittal decision from civilian courts. He was arrested for activism, which helped revealing the deteriorating state of human rights in Egypt.
His arrest comes as part of the campaign against free press. Only a few months earlier, four independent newspapers editors were sentenced to one year in prison. An aggressive campaign took place against bloggers and an administrative court ordered the shutdown of a handful of websites and blogs.
Political detentions do not serve Egypt's democratization process. They manifest the regime's bankruptcy, and its inability to resolve its political disputes without the use of force. We therefore demand the immediate release of Hamza, and call upon all human rights organizations, and pertained parties within Egypt's regime to do whatever is necessary to ensure his release.