ERC makes international demand for release of Egypt’s ill Morsi

Egyptians gather to protest their support for Mohammed Morsi on 15 February 2016 [file photo]

Egyptians gather to protest their support for Mohammed Morsi on 15 February 2016 [file photo]

The ousted President of Egypt, Mohammed Morsi, who is struggling from ill health and languishing in an Egyptian prison, should be immediately released from detention, said the head of an Egyptian political and civil rights organisation.

In an open letter address to heads of states around the world and to human rights organisations, Dr Maha Azzam, of the Egyptian Revolutionary Council (ERC) UK, said the ousted president is being held in conditions that breach international human rights laws and United Nations conventions.

The letter comes days after Morsi made a court appearance in Cairo in connection with a charge of escaping from prison following a custodial sentence imposed in 2011. Morsi’s son, Abdullah, in a post on social media, revealed that his father was refused permission to talk to the judges but informed other detainees that he had collapsed on two occasions and had relapsed into a complete hypoglycaemic diabetic coma.

Read: Egypt Morsi has fainted twice in prison

Last Sunday, Egyptian authorities lifted a four-year-ban and allowed Morsi to be visited by his family for the first time since he was overthrown in a military coup led by current President Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi in July 2013.

In the letter, Azzam said:

[Morsi had] faced fabricated charges in a corrupt judicial system subservient to the will of the military and contrary to the concept of natural justice as well as a breach of Egypt’s commitments to the UN.

Azzam expressed ERC’s grave concern about the “deteriorating health and threat” to the former leader’s life and revealed to MEMO that the president is on a “diet of tinned food” for fear of being poisoned. She also said that Morsi and other detainees were being denied appropriate medical treatment, visits and access to lawyers.

The head of ERC called for an impartial investigation into the conditions under which the president is being held.  She called on the international community to seek assurances from Egypt that detainees “will no longer be subject to torture, rape and other ill-treatment.”

Read: Egyptian exiles to address UN regarding Morsi’s health

“The standards in Egypt’s prisons and the treatment of prisoners is inhumane and contravenes the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners and the United Nations Convention against Torture,” the ERC’s open letter stated.

Quoting Article 9 of the UN Declaration of Human Rights, the head of the council called on global leaders to put pressure on the Egyptian government to release the ousted president.

We believe that the only way forward is for governments such as yours to take up their moral responsibility and pressure the Junta in Egypt (for that is what it is) to respect International Law and to make it clear that members of the Junta government will be held severally and collectively responsible by the international community for any crimes they commit while in office.

(Source / 09.06.2017)

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