For Immediate Release
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167
Egypt: Army Still Torturing People a “Red Line”
WASHINGTON - Dr. AIDA SEIF AL-DAWLA, Dr. MOSTAFA HUSSEIN, @moftasa
Al-Dawla is with the Nadeem Center for Victims of Torture. She is a psychiatrist. Hussein is a doctor at the Task Force Against Torture, which brings together non-profits, bloggers and activists highlighting the continuation of torture in post-Mubarak Egypt on the new webpage against-torture.net.
Hussein said today: “The army is engaging in massive and brutal torture. Civilians, many of them pro-democracy activists, are being detained and beaten. Then, many of them have been brought before military courts. These courts are conducted in secret, limit access to lawyers and do not allow appeals. People are getting sentences of three to five or even seven years for ‘thuggery.’ These civilians are sometimes shown on the nightly news on state TV in an apparent attempt to intimidate the public and ensure ‘order.’ We have testimony of people being beaten, electrocuted, whipped and seeing others beaten to death.
“Perhaps most distressing, the media in Egypt, even the independent newspapers, are largely ignoring army torture and abuse. The army is a red line. If we’re going to have a meaningful democracy in Egypt, this has to change. It’s critical that outside media now cover this; we’ve translated video and testimony from individuals.”
See testimonials: against-torture.net/node/146
The case of Rami Issam (“singer of Tahrir Square”) has received some coverage.
A nationwide consortium, the Institute for Public Accuracy (IPA) represents an unprecedented effort to bring other voices to the mass-media table often dominated by a few major think tanks. IPA works to broaden public discourse in mainstream media, while building communication with alternative media outlets and grassroots activists.