PETITION TO FREE AYMAN NOUR
We the undersigned Members of the Congress of the United States and Members of the Senate of the United States Call upon the Egyptian government to
FREE AYMAN NOUR.
Dr. Ayman Nour, the leader of the Al-Ghad party and the runner-up in last year's Presidential Elections, was arrested and imprisoned on trumped-up charges in January of 2005. Dr. Nour, founded and leads the new liberal and democratic party Al-Ghad (the Party of Tomorrow), which stands for democracy, human and political rights.
For the last several years, Dr. Nour and his party members were harassed and intimidated by the Egyptian authorities. This persecution culminated in his arrest, detention and trial, in which he was sentenced to five years in jail for the forging of signatures to found al-Ghad.This is a deliberate attack on his political, human and civil rights. Furthermore it is an attack on the nascent initiative to free political life in Egypt to move towards democracy and pluralism. The goal of the Egyptian government is to intimidate domestic forces from continuing to advocate reforms.
The Egyptian government has a long history of censoring political speech and imprisoning, on what are frequently false charges, those who express opposition to President Mubarak's regime. In many cases, President Mubarak exercises his control over the judiciary to achieve his own political goals. The judge who sentenced Dr. Nour to five years imprisonment, Adel Abdel Salam Gom'a, is the same judge who previously sentenced Saad Eddin Ibrahim, the prominent democracy and human rights activist, to prison on similar charges.
We urge to continue to pressure the Egyptian government to release Ayman Nour and cease the persecution of Egyptian advocates of democracy and reform.
Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Chair of Subcommitee on the Middle East and Central Asia, FL
Congressman Joseph Crowley, Member of of Subcommitee on the Middle East and Central Asia, NY
Congress Chris Smith, NJ
Congressman Howard Barman, Member of of Subcommitee on the Middle East and Central Asia, CA
Senator Tom Lantos