Press Release: “We are all Khaled Said” facebook page calls for a silent stand in solidarity with torture victims in Egypt
PRESS RELEASE: The “We are all Khaled Said” Facebook group calls for a Silent Stand on Friday the 23rd July on the anniversary of the July 1952 revolution in solidarity with all torture victims in Egypt.
The “We are all Khaled Said” page on Facebook called on Egyptians to participate in the Silence revolution, which is a silent stand in which all participants are dressed in black standing sad and silent in all parts of Egypt. The upcoming stand will take place on the 58th anniversary of the Free Officers Movement Revolution in 1952. This is the fourth stand in which thousands of the Egyptians will stand to support the torture victim Khaled Said, the “Shaheed”, and in protest of the systematic torture in Egyptian police stations, and humiliating treatment of the Egyptian security forces.
The page asked the participants to be calm while dealing with police, not to gather in large numbers and stick to silence during the stand. It also asked the participants to print the following:
1- Article 54 of the Egyptian constitution, which states the freedom of Egyptian citizens to gather and meet in a peaceful manner without violating rules and laws and without the need to inform the Police.
2-The Oath of Police Officers, sworn by police officers on their graduation day, to respect and abide by the Egyptian Constitution.
3-The recent amendment of Emergency law (renewed this year) that states that this renewal of the Emergency law restricts its application to Drug smuggling and terrorism.
The facebook page followers (more than 200,000 members) demand the Egyptian government to:
1- End the Emergency law (Martial law state declared for more that 30 years now!), since it is used extensively by the Police in all cases even in cases where there are no drugs or terrorism involved and used heavily against all political opponents of the Egyptian Government. The emergency law is still used against civilians not involved in drugs or terrorism despite the Egyptian government promise to limit its use to these two areas.
2- Alteration of the penalty on police officers involved in torture cases, to include permanent dismissal, and repealing compassion with those officers.
3- Commitment of public prosecutors to regularly inspect police stations to reveal and stop the systematic torture crimes and detention of innocent civilians in the so-called “Bureau of Investigation’s Fridges” i.e. unofficial detention rooms inside police stations.
4-Expanding the notion of torture, because the current law restricts the definition of torture to ‘Beating the suspect to get a confession’. This enables most of those criminals who commit torture to walk away without penalty.
5-The final demand is that the Egyptian government should officially sign the Anti-torture Protocol, which the government has refused to sign in the International Council for Human Rights. This protocol allows Egyptian Human Rights Organizations to inspect police stations and reveal torture cases, in order to prosecute officers involved in torture.