Amnesty International (AI) has condemned the ‘chilling escalation’ of a crackdown on civil society in Egypt.
The rights organisation was reacting to reports that by human rights groups in Egypt that dozens of activists have been targeted with arrests, travel bans and asset freezes under President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi.
It was learnt that Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) Director of Criminal Justice, Karim Ennarah, was arrested on 18 November while on vacation in the Red Sea resort of Dahab and taken to an undisclosed location.
Ennarah was arrested three days after security forces detained EIPR Administrative Director Mohamed Basheer in Cairo.
Basheer, it was learnt, was accused of charges including ‘joining a terrorist organisation’ and ‘spreading false news’.
‘These arrests, following a meeting at EIPR with Western diplomats, serve a heavy blow against the legitimate work of human rights defenders’, Amnesty International tweeted.
‘Time for the international community to call on Egypt to end reprisals against human rights organizations and release EIPR staff now’.
There was no immediate comment from the Egyptian authorities.
President Sisi led the military’s overthrow of Mohammed Morsi, who was elected president in 2013, following protests against his rule.
Source: Rights Corridor
Photo source: Rights Corridor