Free Man Jailed for Wearing Activist T-Shirt

Kim Daram

Target: Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, President of Egypt

Goal: Release a prisoner of conscience who was allegedly tortured into “confessing.”

Mahmoud Hussein has been in pre-trial detention for over a year and a half, and a judge recently extended his detention for another month and a half. He has been tortured into “confessing” a number of untrue statements, and his arrest was predicated solely on his political beliefs. Sign the petition and demand the immediate release of Mahmoud Hussein.

On the three-year anniversary of the 25 January Revolution, Hussein was arrested on his way home from a protest against the Muslim Brotherhood. He was wearing a shirt that had the Nation Without Torture Campaign logo on it, as well as a scarf with the revolution’s logo. Upon his arrival at the police station he was beaten by police and other prisoners and kept in an overcrowded cell.

Hussein’s brother and lawyer allege that Hussein was tortured into “confessing” a number of crimes, including taking part in an unauthorized protest, possessing explosives, and belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood, which is a banned organization. Hussein was filmed “confessing” to the charges after he told his abusers he could take no more.

Peaceful expression of political beliefs is a universally-recognized human right. Mahmoud Hussein is a prisoner of conscience and must be freed immediately.

PETITION LETTER:

Your Excellency,

I am writing to demand the immediate release of Mahmoud Hussein, who has been detained in horrifying conditions for over a year and a half simply because he wore a T-shirt and scarf that expressed his political beliefs. He is a prisoner of conscience and as such must be released immediately.

Hussein was arrested as he was returning home from a protest that had been broken up by security forces after only about five minutes. The bus he was riding was stopped at a checkpoint and Hussein, who was wearing a T-shirt with the Nation Without Torture Campaign logo and a scarf with the logo of the 25 January Revolution on it, was arrested, brought the police station, beaten, and kept with 50 other prisoners in a cell designed to hold 16.

Hussein’s brother and lawyer allege that Hussein was forced into confessing that he was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, that he had attended an unauthorized protest, and that he possessed explosives. He was allegedly beaten and electrocuted until he agreed to be filmed reading a “confession.”

International human rights standards prohibit the use of torture under any circumstances and protect the right to freedom of expression. Mahmoud Hussein has done nothing wrong and has already suffered far too much. Release him immediately.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Kim Daram

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