March 31, 2011

Egyptian pacifist arrested for insulting the military


by Jan Harris

Egyptian peace activist and blogger, Maikel Nabil Sanad, has been arrested at his home in Cairo and faces trial for insulting the armed forces, after he published an article criticizing the actions of the military during the country’s recent revolution.

He has also been charged with disturbing the public security and publishing false news about the military institution, putting him at risk of being sentenced to three-year’s imprisonment.

Human right groups, including War Resisters’ International (WRI), are calling for Sanad’s immediate release, and are asking people to support him by writing protest letters to Egyptian embassies around the world.

Human Rights First has launched a petition in support of Sanad which will be delivered to the authorities in Cairo by Egyptian activist Esraa Abdel Fattah.

The article which caused Sanad’s arrest claimed that the Egyptian army was actively involved in arresting and torturing opposition activists during the revolution.

Egyptian activists are organizing an anti-torture rally in Tahrir Square.

Protestors, arrested during the revolution and believed to have been beaten and subjected to electric shocks, while women protestors were subjected to virginity tests, indicating that there is still a long way to go before the “New Egypt” emerges.

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