Egyptian prisoners of conscience continue to die in detention as a result of poor conditions, including deliberate medical neglect, solitary confinement, and other human rights violations.
The latest victim is Taj al-Din Abdalqadir Allam, from Alexandria province, who died in his prison cell in Tora Prison as a result of medical negligence.
Taj al-Din was detained as an alleged member of the Al-Amal (or “Hope”) group, otherwise referred to as the Case 930 group. His money was confiscated, and he was prevented from traveling.
Al-Din was a victim of so-called “rotation”. After his first detention, he was released in November 2019, only to be detained again in connection with a separate case in 2020.
With his passing, the number of deaths in Egyptian prisons since the beginning of 2021 has reached 29, the majority of whom died due to a combination of poor conditions and medical negligence. The total number of victims since July 2013 is 897.
According to a statement by Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK), Egyptian prisoners of conscience suffer from medical neglect in detention facilities across Egypt, which do not meet the minimum humane standards. The AOHR UK has pointed to massive overcrowding in cells, prisoners’ malnutrition, a lack of hygiene standards and the spread of insects, and poor ventilation and lighting.
AOHR UK has repeatedly warned against the Egyptian authorities’ “indifference” towards detainees’ lives, despite international agreements and laws imposing responsibility on the government towards them, especially in times of epidemics.
Since President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi assumed power, Egyptian authorities have waged an unprecedented crackdown on dissidents and critics, making thousands of political arrests. Many Egyptians have been convicted and sentenced in unfair trials, dozens of whom have been executed, or held without trial for years on terrorism-related charges in deplorable conditions.