Egyptians disappeared after being deported home from Malaysia

Egyptians disappeared after being deported home from Malaysia
2 min read
09 April, 2019
A human rights group has demanded to know the whereabouts of six Egyptian men deported from Malaysia after being accused membership of a terror group.

The wife of an Egyptian man who was deported from Malaysia has condemned the "forced disappearance" of six Egyptians, including her husband.

Australian Jodi Harris joined human rights groups and demanded to know their whereabouts and fear the men - accused by Malaysian police of being members of a terror outfit - could be tortured.

She told reporters that her 28-year-old Egyptian husband Abdallah Mahmoud who was a student in Malaysia was arrested by police on 2 February.

Malaysian police previously said six Egyptian men and a Tunisian man were detained in early February, alleging they planned to carry out terror attacks in other countries and subsequently deported them to their respective countries on 5 March.

But to date, no official response has been provided from Egyptian authorities regarding the six deported men.

"I want to know where is my husband. He is a victim of forced disappearance," Harris told reporters with tears rolling down her face.

"He is not a member of Muslim Brotherhood or any terror organisations. But I know he will be tortured and ill-treated."

Rights groups have consistently criticised Egypt's ongoing crackdown but the government insists the measures are necessary to maintain stability and counter-terrorism.

Following the 2013 military coup that ousted President Mohamed Morsi in 2013, Egyptian authorities have carried out a far-reaching crackdown on dissent, targeting thousands of Islamists as well as secular activists.

Egypt specifically outlawed Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood movement, deeming it a terror group in late 2013.

Harris said the Malaysian police are responsible for her husband's safety and demanded Egypt confirm they are holding him.

"We want to know where is my husband and the others are," she said.

This is the first time a family member has come forward publicly while others have remained silent due to fear of possible action by authorities, activists said.   

Meanwhile, Latheefa Koya, rights group Lawyers for Liberty's executive director said the new government of Malaysia has failed to uphold human rights.

"This is an international embarrassment for Malaysia. Why the rush to hand them over to Egypt?," she said.