[QODLink]
Middle East

Egyptian prisoners stage mass protest

Thousands of prisoners reported to have held protests denouncing prison conditions and lack of access to justice.

Last updated: 01 May 2014 11:40
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

Thousands of Egyptian prisoners are refusing to attend trials and are staging hunger strikes in protest at conditions and the violations of justice, rights groups have told Al Jazeera.

The protests, which began on Thursday, come days after nearly 700 people accused of violence and belonging to the banned Muslim Brotherhood were sentenced to death in a mass trial that lasted four days.

A statement issued on the behalf of prisoners said the strike was taking place in 90 jails and detention centres in order to protest against the mass trials, and appaling jail conditions.

One prisoner at the Wadi al Natrun told Al Jazeera on Thursday: "We have started our hunger strike now. Plus we've decided not to go out for exercise. We won't be attending any court sessions nor will we stand before any prosecutors."

A panel of human rights groups said that security forces on Wednesday morning entered a prison in Fayoum, 100km south of Cairo, to force prisoners to attend their court sessions. Several prisoners were reportedly injured.

According to a report by the Arab-African International Centre for Consultancy and Human Rights, 20,000 prisoners were involved in the protest.

Prisoners vowed to continue their strike until all their demands are met, with plans to launch a second phase on May 3.

215

Source:
Al Jazeera
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
More than one-quarter of Gaza's population has been displaced, causing a humanitarian crisis.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Muslim charities claim discrimination after major UK banks began closing their accounts.
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Featured
In US study, MIT scientists changed the emotions linked to specific memories in mice.
The seizure of the Tabqa airbase highlights the Islamic State's consolidation of power in eastern Syria, analysts say.
Traditional spring festival blossoms outside India through fun runs, raves and TV commercials.
Parents unable to look after children are marrying them off at a tender age, exposing them to maternal deaths.
New measures needed as dozens of citizens fighting with Islamic State pose home-grown terror threat, PM Abbott says.
join our mailing list