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Egyptian authorities take out their own mercenaries

Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood pray during a protest in support of ousted president Mohamed Morsi, outside Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque in Cairo, Egypt, 29 July 2013 [Ahmed Asad/Apaimages]
Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood pray during a protest in support of ousted president Mohamed Morsi, outside Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque in Cairo, Egypt, 29 July 2013 [Ahmed Asad/Apaimages]

On October 3rd Al Hiwar TV conducted an interview with a relative of Hamdi Hussein. Hussein was a sniper responsible for deaths in Rabba al Adawiya at the massacres in July this year. Hussein was himself killed following police raids on his village

Alhiwar TV channel, 7:20 GMT on Thursday October 3rd

Al Hiwar presenter: With us now is Osman Hamidah, a relative of Rabia sniper Hamdi Hussein, speaking to us live from Beni Suef in Egypt via telephone:

Osman: Hamdi was a young man from the village. He was on excellent terms with everyone in the village. He used to sit with us in the village and tell us how he sniped peaceful protestors in Rabia and how very sad and sorry he was. He told us that he had sniped eight people. They (his superiors) told him "if you don't snipe these people and kill them, we shall kill you and no one will know anything about you." Snipers are known to the intelligence services and are followed closely by them and what they do or say is monitored. This young man was known in the village for accurately shooting birds, he was a good sniper. In the interior ministry they had nicknamed him "the pigeon shooter". His name was Hamdi Kamal Hussein Hamid. On the same day (he passed away) his sister Ridha passed away. She was his twin, she was born on the same day. This incident has enormously affected the people here. It happened on 23 September. It followed a series of (police) raids in the village. Many people in the village were attacked including an elderly disable man known as Sheikh Sha'ban Ibrahim, who happens to be the uncle of Hamdi and his sister, he was their father's brother. Sheikh Sha'ban had no political affiliations whatsoever. He was an invalid. His son, Imad, was arrested and dragged from home only a few days after his wedding. These (police forces) detain any bearded person they find standing in the road. Yesterday, they detained a teacher Muhammad (Lamlum), who's highly respected. They also detained a teacher, Abdulgawad Sabir Abulhasan and an engineer Alaa Salah together with his father. They detained Issam, a respected intermediary school teacher and Radwan, a highly respected teacher, as well as, Samir Abu al-Askari, a good and highly respected person. They detained Abdelgawad Abdelwali, a teacher and the village's muezzin, who is highly respected. They have also detained Muhammad, who is highly respected teacher. They detain anyone they want whether the person has political affiliations or not. They want to destroy Egypt. They do not intend to administer or build Egypt. They are destructive coup perpetrators.

Al Hiwar presenter: Why was Hamdi killed and not arrested?

Osman: That's a very valid question. First of all, when they arrested him he was alive, but they did leave his sister dead. They killed her when she tried to defend her brother, despite the fact that she did not attack them. All she did was ask "why are you taking him?" She asked them this because he had finished his military service and had been given a certificate of appreciation for the work he did at Rabia. He was also given a financial reward. Yet, when his twin sister protested against his arrest they opened fire and shot her. At the time she was carrying her 8 month old child. She was married and lived in Alexandria and had only come for a 2 day visit. When she stood in their way they opened fire at her. They also fired at Hamdi but only shot him in his foot. They took him while he was still alive with only a wounded foot. When his family took his deceased sister to the general hospital, there they found Hamdi, who had been arrested and taken from home alive, a lifeless corpse. His head had been smashed and he had a bullet in the heart. When the family sought written permission to bury him, the prosecutor told them that if they wanted to collect both corpses for burial they had to sign a report which said that the two deceased twins had killed each other in a family feud or something of this sort. They (the police) wanted to liquidate (Hamdi) and not arrest him. They also wanted to kill his uncle Sha'ban and not just arrest him because he has many secrets and they don't want anyone to know anything about them. That's why they shot him.

Al Hiwar presenter: Why are these detentions carried out at this time in the wake of Hamdi's murder?

Osman: This is because they want to muzzle people and prevent them from talking and exposing them. In addition, they don't want demonstrators in the Sumista centre and surrounding villages to protest against this coup. That's why they've been attacking houses and farms around the village. They'd shoot in the air to frighten people and arrest people walking in the streets. They don't use police or army vehicles but civilian unmarked cars which they use to drive away people they beat and kidnap from the street. I was told by a policeman from my village, who accompanied the arresting forces, that they attack detainees, torture them with electricity, abuse them, strip them, beat them, humiliate them and shave their beards.

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