Urgent: Detained journalist Hisham Fouad launches hunger strike
A message from the socialist activist Hisham Fouad from inside prison announcing his hunger strike which has been ongoing since Saturday 10 July in protest against his continued imprisonment despite having spent more than two years in ‘pre-trial detention’, the maximum period specified in Egyptian law.
Hisham was arrested and detained on 25 June 2019. He has faced accusations of “economic conspiracy” along with other prominent opposition figures arrested around the same time, but has never been brought to trial.
“The regime’s continued desire for revenge on activists in a bid to eliminate freedom of opinion and expression (leading to the Renaissance Dam disaster) is obliterating all laws, including the obligation to release detainees after two years of pre-trial detention. This is what is happening in my case, and to make matters worse, the prosecutors have decided after two years to start investigations in preparation for referral to court.
Therefore, I decided to begin a hunger strike, starting from Saturday 10th of July, in defence of the rule of law and the right to a fair trial and to stop this endless cycle.
Since strength is in unity I am sure that I will not be able to achieve any demands without uniting all those who stand in solidarity with the forces of life in society and with freedom-loving people around the world.
I hope that my young family, whom I hold in love and appreciation, will understand this decision, and that my children will realize that I did not accept injustice, whether inside or outside of prison. I hope they will see that what I’m about to do is for the sole purpose of defending their rights and the rights of millions of others to live in a society in which banners of freedom, justice and socialism fly high.
My demand is my immediate release owing to the expiry of the pre-trial detention period which is a maximum of two years by law.
Taking the following factors into consideration:
– The unreasonableness of beginning investigations into my case after the end of the period of pre-trial detention
– Insisting on continuing the investigations with the continuation of imprisonment despite the fact that the law stipulates the release of the detainee if they exceed the period of pre-trial detention during the investigations
– The investigation of videos attributed to me, one of which dates back to 2012 and the other to 2016.”