Reports are appearing on Arabic social media sites that Sisi’s regime in Egypt is ramping up repression against anti-coup protests. At least 11 demonstrators, including teenagers, were murdered by regime forces on Thursday and Friday last week.
The dead include Ahmed Hussein, killed on Friday in Shubra el-Kheima, Egypt’s fourth largest city, and an 18 year old woman whose 16 year old brother is in prison, leading a hunger strike against torture by prison guards.
(pictures from Freedom &Justice Party facebook page)
Four protesters were killed on Thursday. The funeral of one of them in Cairo the next day was fired upon with live bullets. Two more were killed, a young boy and 35 year old man Ahmed Ali.
Reports on these deaths in the English language press have been scant. One exception is Ahram Online’s report on the death of 19-year-old Hisham Rizk, a graffiti artist and activist with the 6 April youth movement.
Hisham’s body was found in a Cairo morgue with an autopsy report claiming he’d drowned in the Nile. He had been missing for a week. The Walls of Freedom facebook page reports: “Many suspect the murderous regime.”
(picture from Walls of Freedom facebook page)
Ordinary anti-coup protesters, many of them associated with the Muslim Brotherhood, have taken the brunt of the repression in Egypt. But the regime is also targeting elements of the secular and liberal left that refuse to fall in behind Sisi’s counter revolution.
Revolutionary Socialist activist Mahienour el-Masry is appealing against a two year jail sentence. She was convicted in May alongside other activists for involvement in the Alexandria protest movement.
Mahienour’s case has been picked up internationally. As Ranwa Yousif writes: “Mahienour’s imprisonment has opened the door to international solidarity not only with her but rather with all the detainees in Egypt.”
In Britain the UCU union and Egypt Solidarity Initiative have published a pamphlet highlighting the role of university campuses as a locus of repression. Nicola Pratt’s 16 page briefing Egyptian Universities on the Frontline of Protest is available from the Egypt Solidarity Initiative website.
Meanwhile the R4BIA solidarity movement organised a London demonstration on Saturday outside Downing Street to highlight ongoing repression in Egypt. The case of the jailed Al Jazeera journalists has gained widespread coverage.
There is a pressing need to build links between the left in the West and all those struggling against Sisi’s regime. We have to oppose repression irrespective of whether those targeted are Islamist or secular.
Cases like Mahienour’s can be taken out and used as a bridge to raise awareness of the wider picture in Egypt and deliver solidarity and dialogue with the revolutionary movement there.
(report by Anindya Bhattacharyya (bat020 at gmail.com) – with thanks to Sam Charles Hamad and Neil Rogall for information and comments)
► rs21 comrades are organising to get more involved in building solidarity with the Egyptian and Syrian revolutions. Please contact Neil Rogall (neil.rogall at yahoo.co.uk) or Sherrl Yanowitz (sherrl2 at yahoo.co.uk) if you’re interested in contributing.