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MOI Refuses Treating Prisoner Threatened with Loss of Vision

The Ministry of Interior Remains Set in its Old Ways and Refuses to Treat a Prisoner Threatened with Loss of Vision

The Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights filed lawsuit number 62685 for judicial year 66 on behalf of Waleed Hassan Mohamed, who is in prison pending case number 3842 for the year 2012, known in the media as the Nile City Towers case, naming the President, the Prime Minister, the Director General of the Prison Authority, and the public prosecutor for their refusal to take the necessary measures to treat the prisoner. In spite of the privileges given to prisoners pending trial by the legislator, including the right to cells separate from those of other prisoners, the right to stay in furnished rooms, the right to wear their own clothing, and also in violation to the Egyptian Constitutional Declaration, the Code of Criminal Procedure, prison regulations, and all international conventions on treating humans with dignity and his right to health and medical treatment.

The plaintiff and his family filed a complaint with the Tora prison warden asking for medical treatment, they also sent a telegraph to the minister of interior and to the public prosecutor asking that medical treatment be offered to the plaintiff. However, nothing has been done till now which demonstrates clear abuse and a failure to provide the plaintiff with medical treatment. This prompted the center’s lawyers to file a lawsuit against the executive branch of government for their decision to refrain from treating the plaintiff.

The plaintiff was arrested during the Ramlet Boulaq events on August 2nd 2012, known in the media as the Nile City events, which are now being investigated before the public prosecutor and where 17 accused are imprisoned pending the case. Their temporary prison sentence was renewed for 30 days at a hearing on September 17, 2012 and they were placed in Tora prison.

Among the 17 accused is Waleed Hassan Mohamed; he suffers from poor health conditions and poor medical treatment offered to him after a gunshot injury to the foot after he was shot by a police officer named Hesham Etman from the Boulak Abul El-Ela police station right before his arrest. He also suffers from an injury to the cornea in the left eye as a result of an injury prior to these events when he was performing his work in protecting the towers from being stormed by thugs, where he was hit by a rock which caused the explosion to his cornea, after which he had his first surgery out of three to complete the treatment process, the sutures are still in his eye. He was scheduled to undergo his second surgery three weeks ago which, so far, the prison administration refuses to carry out, putting his life and his ability to see once again at risk.

The Egyptian Center deplores the Ministry of Interior’s conduct when dealing with the health issues of defendants under its control, and who do not have the freedom to provide their own health care, which brings us back to an age and practices that we had thought were irrevocably gone after the January 25 revolution. The Egyptian Center calls upon all officials and stakeholders to intervene to stop such practices that insult human dignity and the right to bodily integrity. The Center stresses that filing the aforementioned lawsuit came after exhausting all the mechanisms that could be used to help the defendant, particularly since we had knocked on all doors starting with the prison authority and ending with the prosecutor general.