Authorities might have freed some who were unjustly detained, including journalists, as part of Ramadan appeasement but this changes nothing. Repression remains rife in Egypt. This article by Amr Magdi is published by Human Rights Watch (HRW). Here is an excerpt:
During the last days of Ramadan, on April 24, Egyptian authorities freed around 40 unjustly detained prisoners, among them journalists, activists, and human rights defenders, many of whose families have tirelessly pushed for their release for years.
While it is heartwarming to see friends and family of activist Walid Shawky, journalists Mohamed Salah and Essam Abdeen, and others posting pictures on social media of smiling and exhausted former prisoners who spent years in pretrial detention, Egypt’s international partners should recognize publicly that piecemeal releases do not indicate an end to the extensive repression practiced by the current government.
The releases came amid a mounting domestic and international outcry about the suspicious death in custody of economist and former Reform and Development Party member Ayman Hadhoud. They preceded an Iftar dinner on April 26 hosted by President Abdel-Fattah Sisi to which he invited prominent opposition leaders, including former presidential candidate Hamdeen Sabbahi, ex-detainee and former head of the Constitution Party Khaled Dawood, and others. As a precondition for attending these opposition figures had demanded the release of several of the prisoners, according to media outlet Mada Masr.
Read the full article here.