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In Egypt, 340 forced disappearance cases in two months

December 24, 2015 at 12:31 pm

The Egyptian Commission for Rights and Freedoms (ECRF) has said that it registered 340 cases of enforced disappearance in Egypt in the space of just two months, with a daily average of three cases, reported.

In a report issued on Tuesday, the ECRF said that the Egyptian security services, including the National Security Service run by the Ministry of Interior, are involved in the kidnapping of citizens, holding them in secret places in different Egyptian governorates.

According to testimonies collected by the ECRF, victims have been subjected to different forms of torture and abuse such as electric shocks, hanging by the hands and threats of sexual assault during their disappearance.

The reason behind the torture and abuse is to extract confessions and information regarding possible suspects of terrorism or people organising protests.

The ECRF report noted that the fate of some of the people who disappeared following the protest of 30 June, 2013, remains unknown.

In addition, the report accused the National Security Services, known during the Mubarak era as the State Security, of not differentiating between old or young people, men or women and guilty or not guilty.

In its report, the ECRF accused the Egyptian authorities of giving the green light to security officers to torture people without any form of accountability or prosecution.

The ECRF based its report on information collected through the campaign Stop Forced Disappearancee, as well as interviews with survivors, the families of victims and lawyers.

Concluding the report, the ECRF called for accountability for those responsible for these crimes, including officially responding to the complaints of victims and their families, and the formation of a unit by the Public Prosecutor to search for missing people inside official and non-official places of incarcerationn.

The Commission also requested permission for its staff and other human rights groups to carry out sudden visits to prisons to assess conditions and treatment of prisoners. The organisation issued a call for Egypt to join the international agreement that protects people from enforced disappearance, the ICC Rome Statute of 1998 and the anti-torture agreement of 2002.