Thursday, April 10, 2008
some 100 people have been arrested during the clashes risen on April 6, day of the Egyptian general strike.
actually 23 people (2 women and 21 men) were arrested even before taking any action in the strike as a preventive measure. they are currently placed in provisional detention for 15 days under investigation for provoking public unrest and calling for a strike which is against an emergency law that has been implemented in Egypt now for more than 25 years (the same law according to whom more than 50 homosexuals have been processed in the 2001 "Queen Boat Trial"). there is a big possibility those young Egyptians will be sentenced for imprisonment.
today, April 10, journalist Amina Abd El Rahman, has been arrested and detained in a police station in the town of Mahalla al-Kubra. she has been questioned in the absence of a lawyer and has been accused of working as a reporter without permission, according to the story of her husband Hamada ElKashef, reporter in El Badeel journal and who is on his own now in Mahalla.
yesterday, April 9, George Ishaak, one of the leaders of the opposition movement Kefaya, has been arrested. he has been accused of provoking unrest and calling for strikes. El Marg Prison administration has been preventing the admission of medications, food, clothes and blankets to the detainees since the morning. Hossam Shahata, the person in charge of delivering them started a hunger strike inside the prison. finally the authorities yielded to the pressure and allowed everything to be delivered to the detainees.
then my question is: is Egypt a democratic Country? answer: NO.
question #2: are these actions violations of human rights? answer: YES.
Egypt is a strategic partner for America in the process of "pacification" currently ongoing in the Middle East and its soldiers have been sent to kill their Arab brothers in Iraq just not to break the close ties the Country has had with the USA since the Sadat Era in the 70s and (of course) not to lose the HUGE aids its government is receiving from President Bush (Egypt is the second Country after Israel per weapons received). BUT, isn't President Hosny Mubarak aware that, in the past, Saddam Hussein has been a close friend of US too and Osama bin Laden was actually a business partner of Bush sr. and jr. himself? there could be a possibility than, in an attempt to "export democracy" in the Middle East, US troops up river Nile to "protect the disrespected rights of Egyptians"... i hope i'm just too fond of conspiracy theories...
by the way the strike was a kind of success: according to local sources, Cairo streets were empty and many people stayed at home from work, while many parents didn't send their children to school. students at Cairo and Helwan universities held demonstrations, while the Nasserite Students of Assiut university held a vigil on campus.
the Muslim Brothers, instead, did not take part in the strike (unless in the past days it seamed they would do it).
streets of Mahalla al-Kubra (where 27,000 textile workers on strike were expected to be the centre point of the nationwide demonstrations) were empty and schools were closed. The Misr Helwan Spinning & Weaving Company workers said security forces prevented them from demonstrating, arriving in the factory during the night and arresting 150 workers.
now, a new action has been planned for May 4, 2008...