Egypt: The delay of Al-Haram prosecution in conducting an investigation into the incident of beating journalist Asmaa Zeidan, Does it open the gate to the officers of Al-Haram Police Station to escape punishment?

Cairo 30 January, 2018

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) today called on the Public Prosecution to do its job and protect journalist Asmaa Zeidan from the oppression and abuse of two officers of the Ministry of the Interior, to bare the responsibility for respecting the law and investigating into the complaint submitted to the Al-Haram prosecution since more than a week ago, after she was assaulted on 20 January and injured her while in custody in Al-Haram Police Station.

The lawyers of freelance journalist Asmaa Kamel Abdullah, AKA Asmaa Zidane, filed a complaint to the Attorney General of South Giza Prosecution on April 21, 2018, which carried number 454 for the year 2018 South Giza Prosecution, against both Islam Alsayed and Hany Aglan “detectives at Al-Haram Police Station”

stating that during the transfer of female prisoners from a detention room in the station to another smaller detention room, resulting in an overload of prisoners, to which the prisoners objected, both officers assaulted them verbally and physically in a brutal way, and when the journalist objected, the officers targeted her, pulled her hair, dragged on the ground and began beating her causing severe injuries to the eye, jaw, bruises and abrasions in different body parts.

Although the Attorney General of South Giza Prosecution issued a decision to hear the statements of the journalist at Al-Haram prosecution and to do a medical examination to record the injuries she suffered as a result of the assault by Al-Haram Police Station officers, but for more than a week now, the head of Al-Haram Prosecution has not conducted an investigation into the incident and has not implemented the decision of the Attorney General of South Giza and has not summoned the journalist to hear her statement or to conduct the medical examination, which raises doubts about waiting for the wounds to heal and the absence of evidence.

It is worth mentioning that the security forces arrested journalist Asmaa Zeidan on October 15, 2017, from her house for allegedly “insulting the President” and “posting false photos that would harm the reputation of the country against the backdrop of a photo posted on her account on the social networking website “Facebook”, she was detained at the headquarters of Al-Haram Police Station pending the case until now.

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) said: “Asmaa Zeidan is being investigated for publishing a photo on her Facebook account, we have added her name to the list of journalists and prisoners of opinion in Egyptian prisons, after she was assaulted and the complaint she filed, we fear for her safety, especially given the record of violations of the ministry of interior and the deaths of many detainees inside police stations and we also fear that the delay of the investigation into the incident is but a gateway to impunity. “

ANHRI called for the protection of the journalist from the oppression and abuse of the two officers and holds the ministry of interior responsible for the protection and safety of the journalist.