Rights teams name on Egypt authorities to free journalist

NEW YORK (AP) — The Committee to Shield Journalists and Amnesty Worldwide are calling for the Egyptian authorities to launch a journalist who they are saying has been detained by safety officers, and examine allegations that she has been crushed and tortured in custody.

The teams mentioned Esraa Abdel Fattah, a author and human rights activist who works on the Tahrir Information web site, was taken from her automotive by safety officers Sunday in a metropolis west of Cairo. Based on her attorneys, the officers took her to an undisclosed location the place they bodily assaulted her and choked her along with her personal clothes whereas asking for her cellphone password and forcing her to stay standing for a number of hours whereas handcuffed.

Her attorneys mentioned Egyptian authorities have charged Abdel Fattah with spreading false information, membership in a banned group and social media misuse, and ordered her again to detention for 15 days.

“Egyptian authorities should instantly free Esraa Abdel Fattah, drop all costs in opposition to her, and conduct a speedy and clear investigation into allegations that she was tortured by safety forces,” mentioned Sherif Mansour, Center East and North Africa coordinator for CPJ. “Abdel Fattah ought to by no means have been arrested, not to mention topic to the horrific remedy her attorneys say she has acquired in custody.”

“The way of her arrest — being kidnapped by plainclothes officers and brought away in a van in public — marks an alarming new development in the best way Egyptian authorities goal human rights defenders,” mentioned Najia Bounaim, director of North Africa campaigns at Amnesty Worldwide.

CPJ reported that Egyptian authorities have surveilled her and banned her from leaving the nation since 2016. The group mentioned Abdel Fattah is one in all a minimum of seven journalists who’ve been arrested in Egypt anti-government protests that started final month.

Tahrir Information is the digital counterpart of al-Tahrir newspaper; CPJ mentioned its reporting confirmed the web site has been blocked inside Egypt for the final a number of months.

Egypt cracked down on uncommon anti-government protests final month. Greater than 2,000 individuals, together with rights attorneys, activists, journalists and a number of other overseas nationals, had been arrested, attorneys mentioned, however the nation’s basic prosecutor mentioned not more than 1,000 individuals had been questioned.

The federal government has banned all unauthorized avenue protests and has blocked a whole bunch of internet sites, together with some run by unbiased media and human rights teams.

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