Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Free Shawkan and others : More than 1000 days behind bars

Next Saturday Freelance Photographer Mahmoud Abou Zeid aka will stand in front of the Judges panel in Cairo to see if he is going to be released after more than 1000 days behind bars following his arrest during Rabaa sit in dispersal when he was only doing his job or he will continue to suffer in detention pending trial just like the past 600 days.
Shawkan behind bars by Eslam Gomaa

Shawkan, an Egyptian young man who was only doing his job as a photojournalist at Rabaa sit-in when he was arrested along hundreds of people.

The young photographer and 738 other defendants in the trial known as “Rabaa sit in dispersal” in the media are facing nine charges in this trial including forming a militant assembly, cutting highways and attempted murder.

Shawkan and other defendants are facing the death penalty in this trial if they are found guilty.
A freelancer, Shawkan is not a member of Journalists syndicate and I do not think that the current Pro-regime administration of the syndicate cares for him.

The fact that he got Hepatitis C while is in detention and is currently in a need of medical attention do not play any role in his release nor it gives him the right to receive proper treatment in a hospital
I do not know when Shawkan will be set free to enjoy his life for real.
I hope and pray for a miracle that on Saturday the judge will order for his release.

It is not only Shawkan who needs to be released from detention, there are many people like who were arrested and were locked up for infinity and beyond whether in pretrial detention or detention pending trial.

There are lots of names, lots of people who that need to be released from detention and to receive proper medical treatment.
Among those names I remember frequently, the name of Ibrahim Halawa pops up.
Egyptian-Irish Ibrahim Halawa spent the past 4 years behind bars too whether Pre-trial detention or detention pending trial after his arrest in the clashes of Fatah Mosque, the next day following Rabaa Massacre in 2013.

He was sent to prison when he was 17 years old and now he is 21 years old.
A photo of Halawa before his arrest from Facebook
I know that Ireland pressed several times and is pressing but it seems in vain. Even the United Nations tried to use its power to release him but also with no use.

I think they may wait longer till Halwa is sentenced along with other 400 defendants so the President will use his Pardon power and send him back to Ireland.

Halawa and more than 400 other people are also accused of a number of charges including attempted murder. They are facing the death sentence and life sentences if they are found guilty.

Up till now, there are thousands of people in jail following the Rabaa and Nahda sits-in dispersal as well what followed those dispersals from protests.

Many of those young detainees especially who did nothing illegal are frustrated sad and angry.
According to the testimonies of many lawyers, families, and ex-detainees, Daesh finds a new fanbase among those young men, unfortunately.
I do not know what to say more. Hopefully Shawkan , Halawa and others will be released inshallah soon.


  1. I was looking at Shawkan Wikipedia link, and they say he was born in 1987. So if thats the case, he was 26 when they picked him up and he ended in prison and not 17. I wonder what his true date of birth is. I sure hope that someone will put a bug in the ear of the President and release him before its too late and he dies in that prison. Like North Korea, it doesn't make for good press. :(

    1. Actually Ibrahim Halawa was the one who got arrested when he was 17 not Shawkan , dear Deb


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