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Fifth political detainee dies in Egypt due to deliberate medical negligence, CFJ urges Investigation.

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Press release

Geneva – February 18, 2024


The Committee for Justice (CFJ) has reported the fifth death of a political detainee in Egypt’s detention facilities this year. The victim, identified as Abdullah Al-Desawi Saleh (66 years old), passed away on Thursday, February 8, in the Tenth of Ramadan prison. Al-Desawi, a history instructor at the Quesna Educational Administration, had been detained since April 5, 2017, in connection with a political case.

According to CFJ, Al-Desawi suffered from multiple health issues, including liver problems, diabetes, high blood pressure, chest allergies, and shortness of breath. His health deteriorated due to alleged deliberate medical negligence and the harsh conditions of detention. CFJ is calling for impartial, transparent, and prompt investigations into his death and urges authorities to hold accountable those responsible for the neglect.

CFJ also urges the Egyptian authorities to uphold international treaties and covenants on the rights of persons in detention. They emphasize the need to cease the policy of deliberate health neglect against political detainees and improve the living standards of those in custody. CFJ advocates for considering alternatives to pretrial detention for the elderly and sick or their release.

This recent death adds to the monitored deaths by CFJ within Egyptian prisons and detention facilities in 2024. Taha Ahmed Haiba (32 years old) from the village of Ramle, Banha, Qalyubia Governorate, previously lost his life on January 12, 2024, after a battle with cancer.

CFJ highlights its Justice Monitoring Archive, containing information on over 14,000 victims, more than 30,000 violations, and the monitoring of offenses within 500 detention facilities in Egypt. CFJ emphasizes accountability, transparency, and adherence to international human rights standards in treating detainees to prevent further tragedies.

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