Dec, 3rd 2020 – Amnesty International has condemned a sharp rise in the use of the death penalty in Egypt. The campaign group is now accusing the government of a horrifying execution spree.
It says that the Egyptian authorities executed at least 57 people in October and November alone. At least 15 of these executions were related to political violence. The group says the real number was likely to be much higher as the Egyptian authorities do not publish statistics on executions.
In a report published on Wednesday, Amnesty said that the spike in the executions followed a botched breakout attempt in September at Cairo’s notorious Tora prison. In the attempt, several police officers and death row inmates died.
Amnesty’s regional research and advocacy director Philip Luther said that there had been “well documented and systematic breaches of fair trial rights in Egypt, with courts often relying on torture-tainted ‘confessions’.”
Luther said, “The Egyptian authorities have embarked on a horrifying execution spree in recent months, putting scores of people to death, in some cases following grossly unfair mass trials.”
The Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) last month reported that its director of criminal justice Karim Ennarah, was arrested in Dadab while office manager, Mohammed Basheer was detained in Cairo. Days later, Gasser Abdel Razek, the head of the group, was also detained in Cairo.
The EIPR is an independent human rights group which covers a variety of political, civil, economic and social issues in Egypt. The three were charged with spreading fake news and belonging to a terrorist organization.