The Egyptian filmmaker and director Shady Habash has died in Tora Prison where he was being detained under pretrial detention. When Shady became sick in his prison cell, his inmates cried for help for some time, but guards and officers did not intervene until his last breath. He was arrested two years ago, for directing a music video for the singer Rami Essam, for the song Balaha. He wrote a letter last October: “Prison does not kill, solitude does. I need your support not to die.
For the past two years I have tried to resist everything that was happening to me by continuing to be myself, but now I can’t go on.
Resisting in prison means resisting yourself. Protect yourself and your humanity from the impact of what you see every day. You stop, freak out or slowly die because you were thrown into a room two years ago and you were forgotten, not knowing when you will come out. I am still in prison and every 45 days I have to go to a judge who gives me another 45 days without looking at my face or the case documents thanks to which many were released six months ago. I need support and I need you to remember that I’m still in prison and that the regime has forgotten about me. I am slowly dying because I know that I am alone. I know that I have many friends who love me and are afraid of writing to me, thinking that I will eventually [get] out without their help. I need your support now more than ever.”