Urgent Appeal

Egypt: Ongoing arbitrary detention of Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din


New information:

The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources about the ongoing arbitrary detention of Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din, researcher on the right to housing at the Egyptian Commission for Rights and Freedoms (ECRF), a human rights law firm based in Cairo operating in several governorates.

According to the information received, on March 15, 2020, a Cairo criminal court held at Tora’s sub-officers academy rejected the appeal lodged by Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din against Supreme State Security Prosecution’s (SSSP) latest decision to extend his preventive detention by 15 days in Case 488 of 2019 State security prosecution, in the framework of which Mr. Ezz El-Din is being investigated on accusations of “contributing to the achievement of the objectives of a terrorist group” and “publication of false information undermining national security” [1].

The Observatory recalls that Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din has been arbitrarily detained since November 26, 2019, after disappearing for more than 167 days (see background information).

The Observatory expresses its utmost concern over the ongoing arbitrary detention of Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din, which seems to come as a result of his criticism of the policies of the government towards shanty urban areas and slums [2].

The Observatory calls on the Egyptian authorities to release Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din immediately and unconditionally and to end all acts of harassment, including at the judicial level, against him and all the human rights defenders in Egypt.

Background information:

On June 11, 2019, Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din was arrested on his way home from ECRF office in Cairo’s Mokattam area. However, despite requests from his mother and ECRF lawyers, the Mokattam police station consistently denied detaining him. Despite communications from Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din’s mother and ECRF to the Attorney General, no information on the whereabouts of Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din was available until he at last reappeared at State Security Prosecution on November 26, 2019.

Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din, who appeared weak and having lost much weight, told the Prosecutor that he was tortured during his detention to extract information about his relationship to ECRF, and about ECRF’s work, as well as kept in inhumane and degrading conditions of detention, at several security agencies locations.

His detention has been repeatedly renewed by the Supreme Public Prosecution of Cairo since December 4, 2019. As the Public Prosecution can request a renewal every 15 days or 45 days, he could remain for up to two years under preventive detention.

How You Can Help

Please write to the authorities in Egypt, urging them to:

i. Guarantee, in all circumstances, the physical integrity and psychological well-being of Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din as well as of all human rights defenders in Egypt;

ii. Immediately and unconditionally release Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din as his detention is arbitrary since it only seems to aim at punishing him for his human rights activities;

iii. Guarantee the unhindered access of Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din to medical assistance, a lawyer of his choice and his family members;

iv. Carry out a transparent, impartial, immediate and thorough investigation into the above-mentioned allegations of torture in order to identify all those responsible, bring them before an independent tribunal, and sanction them as provided by the law;

v. Put an end to all acts of harassment, including at the judicial level, against Mr. Ibrahim Ezz El-Din, as well as of all human rights defenders in Egypt and ensure that they are able to carry out their activities without hindrance;

vi. Conform in all circumstances to the provisions of the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, adopted on December 9, 1998 by the United Nations General Assembly, in particular its Articles 1 and 12.2.;

vii. Ensure in all circumstances respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with international human rights instruments ratified by Egypt.


· President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, H.E. Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, Fax: +202 2391 1441. Email: p.spokesman@op.gov.eg, Twitter: @AlsisiOfficial
· Prime Minister, Mr. Mustafa Kemal Madbouly Mohamed. Email: pm@cabinet.gov.eg
· Minister of the Interior, Mr. Mahmoud Tawfik, Email: center@iscmi.gov.eg
· Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohamed Hossam Abdel-Rahim, Fax: +202 2795 8103
· Public Prosecutor, Counsellor Nabeel Sadek, Fax: +202 2577 4716
· Head of the Egyptian parliament’s Human Rights Committee, Mr. Alaa Abed, Email: humanrightscomplaints@parliament.gov.eg
· Mr. Mohamed Fayeq, President of the National Council for Human Rights, Fax: + 202 25747497 / 25747670. Email: nchr@nchr.org.eg
· H.E. Mr. Alaa Youssef, Ambassador, Permanent Mission of Egypt to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, Email: mission.egypt@bluewin.ch
· Embassy of Egypt in Brussels, Belgium, Fax: +32 2 675.58.88; Email: embassy.egypt@skynet.be

Please also write to the diplomatic missions or embassies of Egypt in your respective country.

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