Detainees across the Egyptian prison system continue to suffer numerous cases of abuse, including torture, leading recently to a wave of suicide attempts.
A message leaked from the Badr prison complex, outside Cairo, the capital, has revealed that yet more detainees, including the son of the late Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, have attempted suicide.
“Abuses against us continue even during Ramadan, which has prompted a number of detainees to attempt suicide by cutting their wrists”, the letter reads.
The five detainees are Osama Muhammad Morsi, Dr. Abdullah Shehata, Omar al-Aqeed, Ahmed Sharif al-Laithi, and Daoud Khairat. Osama is the son of the former President of Egypt, Mohamed Morsi.
The leaked message is titled ‘We are subject to a slow death in Badr 3: we appeal to the world, help us.’
Following the five detainees’ suicide attempts, prison officials took them to the prison hospital, provided them with basic care, and returned the prisoners to their cells.
The leaked letter also detailed prisoners’ protests in the complex’s second wing.
In response to prisoners’ calling for family visits, prison guards stripped the cells of a number of detainees. Clothes, medicines, and even water taps were removed, and the rooms’ electricity supply was shut off.
At least 37 cells were stripped.
As the leaked reports, “the number of visits has been massively reduced, and is no longer sufficient.”
The authors of the letter explain that “the refectory has been closed, exercise has been prohibited, entrance to hospital has been blocked, and medicines are not being dispensed unless prisoners remove the covers from the CCTV cameras in their cells.”
“We are now in a situation of complete lockdown”, they added.
The letter reported that Dr. Abdullah Shehata was beaten so badly that he lost consciousness. Omar al-Aqeed, who tried to defend him, was also assaulted.
The international community, including the United Nations and various Western allies of the Egyptian regime, have expressed concern about the human rights situation in the country.
However, there has been little noticeable improvement in detainees’ conditions as a result.