Former Egyptian lawmaker third person to die in detention in just two days

Former Egyptian lawmaker third person to die in detention in just two days
A former Egyptian lawmaker has died in detention due to medical negligence, activists said, just one day after two other political prisoners also died.
2 min read
17 November, 2022
Dozens of prisoners have died in Egypt this year for reasons including torture and medical negligence, according to human rights groups [Getty/archive]

A former Egyptian MP has died in prison from medical negligence, activists have said, making him the third detainee to die in Egypt's jails in less than 48 hours.

It was not clear what health problems Ahmed Mahmoud Mohamed Ibrahim, who is the 37th detainee to die in Egypt this year, suffered from.

An estimated 60,000 political prisoners languish in Egyptian jails, where conditions are said to be dire and medical care very poor.

Ibrahim was the secretary-general of the Freedom and Justice Party, the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood. He was arrested in the Suez governorate on 19 December 2015.

The Muslim Brotherhood was outlawed and designated as a terrorist organisation by Cairo in 2013 following a military coup led by current President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi against Egypt's first democratically elected leader, Mohammed Morsi, who was a member of the group.

Earlier this week, Magdy Abdo Al-Shabrawi died at the new Badr Prison due to poor detention conditions and medical negligence. Jailed teacher Shabaan Mohammed Sayed also died "as a result of the conditions of imprisonment" according to human rights monitors.

Research conducted by Amnesty International at 16 prisons in Egypt showed that clinics there lacked the capacity to provide adequate healthcare. Prison officials often refuse to transfer detainees in a timely manner to out-of-prison hospitals.

The rights group says the authorities' failure to provide necessary healthcare care may have contributed to or caused the deaths in custody of prisoners, which could have been avoided.

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Human rights groups say torture and abuse are widespread in the country’s prisons.

The fate of Egypt's political prisoners garnered fresh attention amid the COP27 climate summit taking place in Sharm El-Sheikh - expected to end on Friday - with world leaders calling on Egypt to end its crackdown on freedom of expression.

A high-profile political prisoner is British-Egyptian activist Alaa Abdel Fattah who went on water strike on the first day of COP27 to protest his continued detention over a critical tweet.