Egypt: Free Metro detainees and put an end to double standards

Cairo: 17 May 2018
The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) said that the security forces dealt with the peaceful protesters against the government’s decision to raise the price of the subway tickets by double standards. Security forces arrested several protesters at several stations and all those arrested in one legal position, but some of them were referred to the competent regular prosecution and others to the Supreme State Security Prosecution, which is a violation of the principle of equality among citizens, in addition to that, such incidents raise the questions about how the prosecution dealt with these events.
On May 16, the State Security Prosecution renewed the detention of 15 peaceful protestors in the vicinity of the subway, protesting the government’s decision to raise the price of the subway ticket.
It is noteworthy that in many areas of Cairo there were protests from citizens in the vicinity of the subway stations on 12 May, because of the excessive increase in the price of the subway ticket; the security forces arrested several citizens in the Helwan area and filed for ten of them a record which carried No. 13119 for the year 2018 Helwan misdemeanors, and they appeared before the Public Prosecution on 13 May 2018, where they were accused of “Participating in demonstrations that disturb security and public peace, disrupting the interests of citizens, affecting a public utility, disrupting the subway traffic flow, and participating in a gathering of more than 5 persons intended to deliberately commit the crime of disrupting public transportation” and the prosecution decided to detain them for four days pending investigations. In the session of imprisonment renewal yesterday, Helwan Court decided to release them with the guarantee of their place of residence.
However, the security forces arrested 22 citizens from other areas, such as Maadi and downtown, they appeared in front of the State Security Prosecution on 13 May 2018. The State Security Prosecution accused them of “Joining a terrorist group to disrupt national security and to disrupt the implementation of the Constitution and the law, participating in a demonstration to disrupt public transport and harming the interests of citizens. Another accusation was added to some of the defendants, namely, the use of social networking sites to incite to carry out terrorist acts, all of them in case No. 718 of 2018 State Security and all of them are still being held in pre-trial detention pending investigations.

The Arab Network for Human Rights Information calls for the release of all arrested protesters against the background of the protests and putting an end to the use of double standards by the security authorities when it comes to the legal treatment of peaceful protesters and to the abuse of peaceful protesters in order to prevent peaceful protests.