Egypt Watch

Families of Egyptian political detainees in Gamsa complains intransigence

The Egyptian Network for Human Rights said that it had received many complaints from the families of political detainees in Gamasa General Prison, a high-security prison, due to the intransigence of the prison administration with them.

The organization issued a statement in which it said that it monitored a number of violations committed by the prison administration during the monthly visit of the families of political detainees. Only one person is allowed to enter for a visit that lasts no more than 10 minutes in a very crowded room, which contains about 30 people, said the statement. Visits take place through two barbed wire barriers, which causes a loss of communication between the detainee and his family.

The Egyptian Network documented intransigent measures against political detainees, such as not allowing the entry of any sufficient meals for prisoners, with the prison canteen still closed. This comes in conjunction with the increasing complaints of the detainees themselves about the continuation of “the campaign of starvation” practiced by the prison administration against them.

According to the statement, the administration also continues to prevent the entry of medicines of all kinds, underwear and outer clothing, and personal hygiene items. In addition, the Egyptian Network documented that the prison administration forced visitors, including the sick and the elderly, to walk approximately 2 kilometers in order to see their relatives.ةWhile the prison administration is unjustifiably intransigent against political prisoners, it grants their criminal counterparts all the rights stipulated in the prison regulations, allowing them to bring in all food, fruits, clothes and blankets, in addition to not being intransigent with them during the visit period, allowing more than one person to visit them.

The complaint is not the first, as it was preceded by several cries for help from the families of the detainees of Gamasa Prison itself and the Burj El-Arab Prison in Alexandria. The complaints include similar violations, which confirms the abuses of the Ministry of Interior and the Prison Authority towards opponents, and the continuous efforts to break their will, according to the Al-Shehab Center for Human Rights, which called on the Public Prosecutor to take the necessary legal action to hold the perpetrators of these violations accountable.

Violations in prisons and places of detention in Egypt have been going on for years, as a prolonged, illegal and inhuman punishment, as international human rights organizations have previously confirmed that Egypt is witnessing, under the rule of Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, its worst human rights crisis in decades.