On Monday, June 13, the Egyptian authorities decided to release 15 political detainees, including dissident Magdy Qarqar, after two years and a half of arbitrary detention.
Member of the Presidential Pardon Committee, Lawyer Tariq Al-Awadi, stated on Facebook that the Supreme State Security Prosecution released 8 detainees, including the former Secretary-General of the Independence Party, Magdy Qarqar, and film producer Moataz Abdel Wahab.
Those released have been accused in 6 cases between 2019 and 2021, of “spreading false news”, which is a charge generally used by the Egyptian authorities against its critics.
On April 28, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi announced an expected national dialogue. Since then, around 36 have been released, including 3 prominent opponents, Yahya Hussein, Mohamed Mohy El-Din and Magdy Qarqar, along with activists Hossam Mounis and Sherif El-Roby.
Since Abdel Fattah El-Sisi assumed power in the country in 2013, the Egyptian authorities have been waging an unprecedented crackdown on dissidents and critics, arresting thousands in politically motivated arrests, many of whom have been convicted and sentenced in unfair trials, or held without trial for years on baseless terrorism-related charges, in very poor detention conditions.