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France officials call for Egypt's Sisi to release human rights activist

Egyptian-Palestinian politician Ramy Shaath [Facebook]
Egyptian-Palestinian politician Rami Shaath, 22 August 2019 [Facebook]

More than 180 French MPs and city council members have signed a letter calling for Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi to immediately release prominent human rights defender Ramy Shaath, Arab48 reported on Friday.

The MPs and council members expressed their concerns about the continuous detention of Shaath along with thousands of other prisoners without charges.

Shaath, 48, is a Palestinian-Egyptian activist married to a French wife. He is the son of senior Palestinian Authority and Fatah official Nabil Shaath. Egyptian authorities detained him in July 2019 and deported his wife to Paris on the same day.

In July 2021, Shaath, according to the signatories, would have spent two years under remand detention, which has been renewed 23 times since he was initially detained.

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Shaath is one of the prominent figures of the revolution of January 25, 2011, which ousted late dictator Hosni Mubarak, and is also the coordinator of the BDS movement in Cairo.

In April 2020, Shaath was added to Egypt's list of "terror entities and individuals".

Al-Sisi, who carried out a military coup against the first-ever, freely-elected Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi in 2013, has been facing severe criticism over his brutal violations of human rights and putting over 60,000 people in prison over their political affiliations and views.

Recently, 63 international rights groups, including Human Rights Watch, issued a statement calling for Cairo to take immediate measures to end its comprehensive campaign targeting rights groups and all forms of peaceful protest.

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