Sinn Féin MP Lynn Boylan has called on the Irish government to take an international legal challenge against the Egyptian government for their breach of the human rights of Irish citizen Ibrahim Halawa, said a statement published on the party’s website.
The statement comes after Halawa’s family called on the Irish government to take international legal action and begin proceedings against the Egyptian state at the International Court of Justice.
Halawa was arrested four years ago at the Al-Fath mosque in Cairo, has been detained ever since and was told he faced the death penalty if he was found guilty.
On Wednesday his trial was adjourned for the 20th time.
Halawa has become so weak from his hunger strike that he was brought on a wheelchair to see his family when they came to visit him in jail and is being kept alive by glucose injections. In a statement his sister Somaia Halawa said:
“The sad reality is my brother is dying in an Egyptian prison, facing a mass trial, which at this rate will take over 10 years. Given Ibrahim’s current mental and physical state we don’t believe he will be strong enough to survive that delay.”
Calls to release him on health grounds have been rejected.
“It is clear from the most recent postponement that President Sisi is not taking the calls of the Irish Government to release Ibrahim seriously, despite having the means to do so through both the youth amnesty and the presidential decree. I believe that the Irish Government must now put their words into action and pursue the legal avenue,” said Boylan.
“Over the last 3 and half years, the court has only heard evidence on two occasions from 15 of the 100 witnesses. At this rate, it will take years for the trial to conclude, it is time that the Irish Government took a hard line and defended this young man’s human rights.”