For over a decade, Anas al-Beltagy has languished in arbitrary detention, solely due to his family affiliation. Since his arrest in December 2013, the Egyptian authorities have inflicted a series of human rights violations upon him, including enforced disappearance, torture, and other forms of ill-treatment. Since his transfer to the 10th of Ramadan Prison on June 8, 2023, he has endured prolonged solitary confinement and has been denied any prison visits. His only connection to the outside world is through video link appearances at pre-trial detention renewal hearings.
During his latest hearing in November 2023, alarming incidents unfolded. Anas al-Beltagy was interrupted by the judge, and his audio was muted when he attempted to voice complaints about his treatment and prison conditions. These interruptions raise serious concerns about his overall well-being. It is imperative that he is immediately and unconditionally released, putting an end to this prolonged injustice.
Here’s what you can do:
Write to the Egyptian President urging him to:
- Ensure that Anas al-Beltagy is immediately and unconditionally released and all charges against him are dropped as they are brought solely because of his family links and the exercise of his human rights.
- Guarantee that pending his release, he is held in conditions meeting international standards for the treatment of prisoners and granted regular access to his family, lawyers and adequate healthcare.
President Abdelfattah al-Sisi
Office of the President
Al Ittihadia Palace
Cairo, Arab Republic of Egypt
Salutation: Your Excellency:
His Excellency Ahmed Abdallah Ibrahim HAFEZ
Embassy of the Arab Republic of Egypt
454 Laurier Avenue East
Ottawa, ON K1N 6R3
Tel: (613) 234-4931, 4935 Fax: (613) 234-9347/234-4398
Anas al-Beltagy’s Detention
In December 2013, security forces arrested Anas al-Beltagy, a 20-year-old, during a visit to Tora Prison Complex. Shockingly, they surrounded and beat him and his mother before interrogation on accusations of assaulting prison guards. The prosecution provisionally released them on bail after about twenty hours of detention.
Later, on December 31, 2013, Anas al-Beltagy was arrested at a friend’s house in Nasr City, where he was forcibly disappeared for nearly a month. During this period, he experienced torture and other ill-treatment, including confinement in a small iron cage described as “unfit for humans.” His subsequent transfers to different prisons only exacerbated his suffering.
Inhumane Prison Conditions
In Badr Prison (November 2022 to June 2023), Anas al-Beltagy endured solitary confinement in a freezing cell with 24-hour fluorescent lights, no outdoor exercise, and no contact with other prisoners. Despite well-documented patterns of inadequate provision, his family is barred from bringing him essential items, food, climate-appropriate clothes, and medicine.
During pre-trial detention renewal hearings, held remotely via video link since 2022, Anas al-Beltagy complained about his deteriorating physical and mental health. These hearings, often with cuffed appearances, erode fair trial standards, taking place under coercive circumstances, limiting communication with lawyers, and exposing detainees to risks of reprisals for complaints.
Security forces’ actions have not only targeted Anas al-Beltagy but also his family.Asma al-Beltagy, his 16-year-old sister, was killed during the violent dispersal of the Rabaa al-Adawiya sit-in in 2013. Shockingly, no security or military official has been held accountable for the lethal use of force. Authorities continue to detain thousands associated with the Muslim Brotherhood without consequence.