Free 'prisoners of conscience', Egypt told

2014-02-13 13:41
Mohammed Morsi (AFP

Mohammed Morsi (AFP

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

Cairo - Egyptian leftist politician Hamdeen Sabahi called on Wednesday for the release of what he called "prisoners of conscience", days after he announced he would run for president.

Egypt is preparing for presidential and parliamentary polls due within six months under a political transition plan set out after the army ousted Islamist president Mohammed Morsi in July following mass protests against his rule.

Since Morsi was deposed, hundreds of his supporters have been killed and thousands arrested in a crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood. Some well-known secular dissidents have also been jailed in recent months for protesting without permission.

"At the moment there are real prisoners of conscience in Egypt," Sabahi said in an interview with a privately-owned television channel. He was referring to young people involved in the 2011 uprising that swept veteran autocrat Hosni Mubarak from power and the 2013 protest movement against Mursi.

"I demand that those leave in freedom in the style appropriate for a country under the rule of law."

Sabahi, 59, came third in the 2012 presidential election won by Morsi. At the time, the left-wing candidate built a big following among voters, using a popular touch to beat candidates with better funded campaigns.


Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the army chief who ousted Morsi, has yet to announce his candidacy, but is widely expected to win the presidency easily. The interim government has declared the Brotherhood a terrorist organisation.

Secular activists arrested last month on the third anniversary of the revolt against Mubarak say they have been tortured, some with electric shocks, relatives and lawyers who have seen them said. The Interior Ministry denied any abuses.

"I don't accept either the existence of a prisoner because he has an opinion while not having any connection with terrorism, or the existence of any kind of torture," Sabahi said.

"The children of the revolution are imprisoned and the corrupt of the Mubarak regime have reappeared and these two things create feelings of fear."

Also on Wednesday, the public prosecutor sent 143 people to trial on charges of involvement in an attack on a police station in Kerdasa near Cairo in August in which at least 11 policemen were killed.

The building was hit with rocket-propelled grenades and burned down after police had stormed Islamist protest camps in Cairo the same day and killed hundreds of Mursi supporters.

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.
Read more on:    mohammed morsi  |  egypt  |  north africa  |  egypt crisis 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


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Ireland centre Payne out of RWC
LIVE: Samoa v Scotland
Jones: Japan can be 'team of the tournament'
LIVE: Australia v Wales
Traffic Alerts

The phrase for today is:”Out of the blue.” Expect the unexpected and work with the changeable energy. Your intuition is more

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.