For decades Egyptian citizens have fought for their oppression to end, but the major crackdown on dissent that followed the 2011 Arab Spring protests signalled the end of hope for democracy in Egypt.
Since then, Egypt has ramped up its suppression of activists, making its name as the third largest executioner in the world, and committing atrocities daily. The regime does this in the name of the current President Abdel fattah El-Sisi, who will remain in power until at least 2030 due to the legislature amending the rule on presidential term limits. This political setup ensures that the President has almost unfettered power and can quash any opposition before it starts. His indefinite reign makes a mockery of the long cherished election system of democratic states and imposes a ruler the people do not want.
To maintain his control, the President punishes anyone who speaks against him, in any way, or threatens the ‘family values’ of Egypt. This has led to the civil rights of many citizens being violated, with the Egyptian justice system being just only in name. The family of detained political activist Alaa Abd el-Fattah described the regime as a “war against the young who dare to dream of a bright future for themselves and their country”.
As of 14 June 2021, at least 51 men and women have been executed in 2021 so far, with 183 people sentenced to death in 2015 over a single case of protest in Cairo. Those not already executed are detained and tortured, with many women and minors imprisoned without any legal recourse to fight their case.
The use of terror courts, courts designed to prosecute terrorist offences without having to obey domestic laws, means anyone who dares to speak against the state can be put on trial, labelling ordinary citizens as terrorists for writing a single tweet asking for peace. Prisoners are subject to severe abuse whilst behind bars as countless prisoners have come forward with stories of brutal sexual assault as authorities use rape as a weapon to humiliate and psychologically terrorise inmates. For those they are unable to try in court, the State resorts to using snipers to execute civilians quickly and mercilessly, with citizens being murdered by the regime whilst walking home.
At Grant Liberty, we have compiled a report on the use of terror courts and the cruel detention conditions of prisoners in the hopes that the international community will take action to hold Egypt accountable for this abuse. It is only by revealing the reality of the Egyptian justice system that citizens will have a chance to escape this inhumane regime and restore the hope for democracy.