Egypt activist goes on hunger strike

2014-08-19 21:18
An Egyptian protester waves a national flag over Tahrir Square, the focal point of Egyptian uprising as opponents of President Mohammed Morsi are gathered in Cairo, Egypt. (Amr Nabil, AP)

An Egyptian protester waves a national flag over Tahrir Square, the focal point of Egyptian uprising as opponents of President Mohammed Morsi are gathered in Cairo, Egypt. (Amr Nabil, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cairo - A prominent activist in Egypt began a hunger strike to protest his imprisonment after being convicted on charges of violating the country's widely criticized protest law, according to a statement Tuesday from his family.

Alaa Abdel-Fattah was a major force in the 2011 revolt that toppled long serving autocrat Hosni Mubarak.

An outspoken blogger, Abdel-Fattah has been in and out of prison in the three years since Mubarak's ousting. He campaigned against military trials for civilians during the 17 months that generals held power following Mubarak's resignation. Abdel-Fattah opposed Islamist President Mohammed Morsi as well, but strongly disapproved of the military's return to politics in the wake of Morsi's ousting.

His sister is detained over similar charges.

In a statement on Tuesday, the activist was quoted as saying: "I will no longer play the role they have written for me." It said that he started his hunger strike on Monday night. The family said it held authorities responsible for Abdel-Fattah's safety.

His hunger strike comes a day after he visited his unconscious father, an experienced rights lawyer, in hospital after undergoing surgery.

"The scene of his unconscious father ... was a turning point for Alaa and at the end of the visit he decided he will not co-operate with this ... unjust situation even if the price is his life," the statement read.

Abdel-Fattah won an appeal and retrial after he was sentenced to 15-year in prison for inciting and participating in a demonstration last year.

The June sentence was the toughest against any of the secular activists behind the 18-day uprising that ended Mubarak's 29-year reign. It is also the first conviction of a prominent activist since former army chief Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi took office as president.

Read more on:    egypt  |  north africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.