Updates

Ayman Nour's statement from prison

Presidential Decree pardoning prisoners who have served half their sentence on 23 July benefits convicts of 60 crimes that include espionage, murder, torture, insulting religion, raising prices, monopoly, false testimony. Ayman Nour is excepted from the pardon.

 

The Interior Ministry, the Prisons' Department and the administrations of 40 prisons were notified yesterday of the presidential decree pardoning the prisoners how have served half their sentences on 23rd July 2008. Article 3 of the Presidential Decree stated that the pardon does not apply to those deemed to be dangerous to public security and those –as is the case with Dr. Ayman Nour, leader of the Al-Ghad party and the number 2 presidential candidate in Egypt's first and last presidential election- charged with forgery. Nour was sentenced to five years on charges of forging some of the powers of attorney used to establish the Al-Ghad party in 2003 days following the mentioned election. The Political Parties Law requires the submission of 50 powers of attorney, at least half of which are workers and farmers, from those applying to establish political parties.

 

Nour issued a statement from his prison describing the Presidential Decree as a clear decision of detention against Nour from the source of the Decree, the President. He pointed out that it no longer makes sense to talk about the President not interfering with the Judiciary. When he issued the Decree, the President knew that serving sentences is subject to pardon after half the term of the sentence, a custom in Egypt since such decisions were issued by the Ottoman ruler on each religious feast.

 

Nour affirmed that the crimes excluded from the pardon are always those related to drug trafficking and espionage. The latter was eliminated from the list of excluded crimes in order to release spy Azzam Azzam.

 

In his statement Nour pointed out that the majority of pardon decrees during the rule of President Mubarak did not previously state that forgery is excluded from the pardon as is the case this year. These are Presidential Decrees 265 of 1997 published in issue 32 of the official gazette on 7/8/1997; 303 of 1998 published in issue 38 of the official gazette on 17/9/1998; 305 of 1999 published in issue 39 of the official gazette on 30/9/1999; 333 of 2000 published in issue 32 of the official gazette on 10/8/200 and other decrees which did not exclude forgery from the pardoned crimes!!

 

The statement denied any justification of this exclusion related to public interest or the seriousness of the crime as the pardon includes more serious crimes, such as murder, espionage, corruption, gambling, usury, and insulting religion, as well as endangering places of worship, raising prices, monopolies and false testimonies!!

 

Turrah prison, south of Cairo, Ayman Nour


Captive to a Discarded Cause

Egyptian dissident Ayman Nour embraced the president's 'freedom agenda' in 2005. He is still in jail.

washingtonpost

Tuesday, July 22, 2008; Page A20

 

TOMORROW, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak will pardon hundreds of prisoners who have served more than half of their sentences, an annual gesture of mercy coinciding with commemorations of the July 23, 1952, "revolution" that brought Egypt's military-backed regime to power. If past practice holds, those freed will include some convicted of violent crimes such as murder and rape. Yet the government has announced that people convicted of the distinctly non-heinous crime of forgery will not be eligible. Is Egypt suffering from an intolerable plague of counterfeiters? No, but its best-known political prisoner, Ayman Nour, happened to be convicted on that charge in a blatantly rigged 2006 trial.
Mr. Nour is a liberal democrat who, inspired in part by President Bush's call for democracy in Egypt, challenged Mr. Mubarak's reelection as president in 2005. His reward was to be sentenced to five years in prison, where he has been subjected to beatings and other abuse. Mr. Mubarak's relentless and vindictive persecution of Mr. Nour can only be seen as a calculated and personal insult to Mr. Bush and his "freedom agenda."

Mr. Nour has now served more than half of his five-year sentence. He is in poor health, suffering from diabetes and heart problems that have led to repeated hospitalization. He became eligible for parole in the spring; he has also appealed for release on medical grounds. Yet it seems likely that he will be forced to serve his full term, keeping him in prison for two years after Mr. Bush leaves the White House.

The president has made token gestures toward fulfilling his second inaugural promise to defend dissidents such as Mr. Nour. A year ago he mentioned his case in a speech in Prague; in May he told reporters that he had brought up Mr. Nour during a meeting he had with Mr. Mubarak. But the administration has shrunk from the measures it once was willing to take to help Egyptian political prisoners. For example, Mr. Bush withheld millions in U.S. aid to Egypt to win the freedom of dissident intellectual Saad Eddin Ibrahim in 2002.

In the past two years, Mr. Bush has all but abandoned his freedom agenda, allowing the State Department to return to the appeasement of autocrats such as Mr. Mubarak. We'd think, though, that the president would not be content to ignore such blatant mistreatment of someone who believed his words. The leverage to respond to Mr. Mubarak's behavior -- in the form of excessive and wasteful U.S. aid to the Egyptian military -- is readily available. If Mr. Nour is not freed this week, Mr. Bush ought to feel morally obligated to use that leverage.


Dissident fights on from prison

The National - Abu Dhabi,United Arab Emirates

Nadia abou el Magd, Foreign Correspondent

Ayman Nour, centre, arrives last March under police escort at Egypt’s high court, where his appeal to be released from prison was turned down. Khaled Desouki / AFP

CAIRO // Ayman Nour, Egypt’s most prominent dissident, has spent the past three years in jail on fraud charges, but rather than break his spirit, the former legislator and opposition politician said it has made him even more determined to carry on his fight for democracy.

Mr Nour shot into the limelight in 2005 when he entered the country’s first multi-candidate presidential elections. But soon after setting up his party, he was arrested and charged with forging documents to get a permit, charges his allies said were politically motivated. His detention drew condemnation from the United States, and three months later he was released and allowed to contest the elections, which saw him draw close to Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s president since 1981. It was a short-lived victory. Three months later he was tried for fraud and sentenced to five years in prison.

“Most of the time I feel that I didn’t enter prison; that I’m in a constant battle since I ventured into the presidential race: fighting for Egypt’s freedom, which is a fight I will wage till the last breath in my life,” Mr Nour told The National on Saturday in a rare interview at Tora prison, on the outskirts of Maadi, east of Cairo.

“I’m paying the price for a crime I didn’t commit, just because Mubarak wants to prevent me from competing with him or his son,” said Mr Nour in a reference to Gamal Mubarak, 44, who many believe is being groomed to inherit power from his father, now 80.

Last week, George W Bush, the US president, called for the release of Mr Nour, 44, along with several other democracy campaigners, as part of his “freedom agenda” campaign, but many Egyptians, including Mr Nour, believe the move was more damaging than helpful.

“Bush’s initiative is kind and very important in its timing, as it came just 24 hours after Mubarak decided to keep me in prison,” said Mr Nour, referring to the Egyptian president’s pardon of 1,500 prisoners on July 23.

“But I can’t say that the American administration has always been serious in pushing for my release. Sometimes it gave priority to principles, but more often interests prevailed,” he said.

The Washington Post called Mr Mubarak’s decision to keep Mr Nour in jail a “slap in the face” for the US president. But local media said it was well-deserved and would teach Mr Bush not to interfere in the country’s affairs.

“Thanks be to God that The Washington Post considered not releasing Ayman Nour to be an insult to president Bush,” wrote Karam Gabr, chairman of the board of the state-owned Rose El Youssef. “Most Egyptians feel happy because the slap on Bush’s face will be repeated every time he intervenes in what is not his business,” he wrote.

Washington’s repeated calls to Cairo to improve its human rights record have strained ties between the two allies, with Mr Mubarak boycotting a meeting in May in which Mr Bush again pushed for multiparty democracy.

International human rights groups have also criticised Mr Mubarak for a heavy-handed approach in dealing with dissidents.

Sixteen activists were arrested on July 23, a national holiday to mark revolution day, for wearing “April 6” T-shirts, singing national songs and demanding the release of Mr Nour and other activists. They were ordered detained for 15 days.

Amnesty International said the youths were attacked by riot police and security forces who used tear gas and beat them.

April 6 refers to the date this year when a number of bloggers, activists and opposition groups called for a nationwide strike in support of textile workers in the city of Mahalla, north of Cairo, who were demanding better pay and conditions. Three people were killed and dozens wounded by security forces. As many as 55 people are still in detention.

Wael Abdel Fattah, an Egyptian columnist with the Lebanese daily Al Akhbar, said the government was trying to scare the opposition from entering the political arena.

“We were expecting the arrests, but there is no other way for changing this regime, and stopping the widespread corruption in all fields, than protesting peacefully,” said Waleed Rashed, 24, a spokesman for the April 6 Youth group.

Some of the April 6 organisers and the activists arrested on July 23 were members of Mr Nour’s el Gihad (Tomorrow) political party.

“It’s shocking what happened to those youth; as much it gives hope that they are demanding my freedom and pressing for what I was imprisoned for,” said Mr Nour, smoking a cigarette in the office of the prison’s director, where the one-hour visit took place.

“The youth and I are weak, but you know what, the regime that is scared from us is weaker, despite its oppressive might,” he said.

Also at the interview was Gamila Ismail, Mr Nour’s wife, a former TV anchorwoman whom he married in 1989. The couple, who have been married since 1989, have two sons, aged 16 and 17.

“Despite grave losses to my health, my family, my party and finances, I feel prison has earned me more credibility among the youth and average Egyptian, despite the state’s tarnishing campaigns against me,” he said, referring to state-run newspaper articles that paint Mr Nour as a fraudster. “The enlightened people, and those who hate the regime, and they are many, know that they are lying,” he said.

Mr Nour is diabetic, and suffers from high blood pressure and heart problems. His medical problems mean he is kept separated from other prisoners at the prison “hospital” where he sleeps on a bed, not the floor like other inmates. Despite the hardships of prison life, he tries to keep to the same routine: waking at 4am for morning prayers, and listening to the radio, including the BBC, Monte Carlo and the American-funded Sawa.

“I feel the broadcasters and the listeners who comment on newscasts and programmes from around the globe are my friends,” Mr Nour said with a smile. “I also watch the Egyptian channels … I read and write … cook my own food and go to sleep at 11pm.”

Since December, Mr Nour has been writing a daily column called Nour’s Window in el Destour, an Egyptian opposition newspaper.

He said he has also written four or five books, and is waiting to have them published when he is released.

“It was very difficult at the beginning of my stay here – clashes and fights – but now, I feel nothing matters to me, prison really killed the fear of anything in my heart, and made me much closer to God.”


INTER-PARLIAMENTARY UNION
CHEMIN DU POMMIER 5
1218 LE GRAND-SACONNEX / GENEVA (SWITZERLAND)
TELEPHONE + 41 22 - 919 41 50 - FAX + 41 22 - 919 41 60 - E-MAIL postbox@mail.ipu.org
CASE No. EGY/02 - AYMAN NOUR - EGYPT
Resolution adopted by consensus by the IPU Governing Council at its 182nd session *
(Cape Town, 18 April 2008)
The Governing Council of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, Having before it the case of Mr. Ayman Nour, a member of the People's Assembly of Egypt at the time of the submission of the communication regarding him, which has been the subject of a study and report of the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians following the Procedure for the treatment by the Inter-Parliamentary Union of communications concerning violations of the human rights of members of parliament, Taking note of the report of the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians, which contains a detailed outline of the case (CL/182/12(b)-R.1-Add.), Considering that Mr. Ayman Nour, founder of the opposition Al-Ghad party who stood in the presidential elections of September 2005, had his parliamentary immunity lifted on 29 January 2005 and was immediately afterwards arrested on charges of forgery and counterfeiting for the purpose of registering his party; on 24 December 2005, he was found guilty and sentenced to a five-year prison term, which was upheld at last instance and which he is currently serving; Mr. Nour's health is said to be poor; a petition for release on medical grounds which Mr. Nour filed in August 2006 was rejected on the basis of an official medical report of January 2007 to the effect that Mr. Nour's continuing imprisonment did not endanger his life; appeals against that decision were rejected at final instance, on 17 March 2008, by the High Administrative Court; Mr. Nour's lawyer has now lodged a pardon petition with the Head of State; in mid-May 2007, Mr. Nour was assaulted by security officers in court where he had to attend a hearing in connection with another case; on 6 September 2007 one of Mr. Nour's co-accused, Mr. Ayman Hassan Ismail El-Refa'y, who had retracted his statement against Mr. Nour and expressed the wish to give new evidence in the case, was found hanged in his cell, which he shared with three other prisoners; the authorities claim he committed suicide,
Noting that, owing to the largely conflicting information provided by the authorities and the sources on almost all aspects of this case, in particular regarding Mr. Nour's arrest, the registration of his political party, the circumstances of his co-accused, the judicial proceedings, the physical assault on Mr. Nour of May 2007, his conditions of detention, his state of health and the medical treatment he is afforded, the Committee suggested that an on-site mission to Egypt could help it clarify the facts surrounding these issues,
Stressing in this regard that missions are worthwhile only if the Committee's delegation can also visit the individual member of parliament concerned and that the Committee and indeed the IPU has consistently upheld this requirement throughout the Committee's thirty-year history,
Considering that the Attorney General, however, refused to allow the Committee's delegation to meet with Mr. Nour on the ground that such a visit would be contrary to Egyptian law and an interference with the Egyptian judiciary; noting, that according to the sources, a representative of the African Union visited an Egyptian prison on 18 August 2007, that a journalist visited Mr. Nour in prison in January 2007, and that the international non-governmental organization Human Rights Watch was authorized to visit Egyptian prisons in the 1990s and issued a report thereon,
* The delegation of Egypt expressed its reservation regarding the resolution, in particular with respect to its preambular paragraphs and stated that the Egyptian judiciary had ruled on the case, including Mr. Nour's petition for early release, and that those matters were therefore not open to questioning.
- 2 -
1. Thanks the Speaker of the People’s Assembly for his consistent cooperation with the Committee in this case and for his efforts to organize the proposed mission;
2. Is convinced that such a mission would go a long way in contributing to a satisfactory settlement of this case; consequently expresses the hope that the Attorney General will reconsider his decision;
3. Stresses that meeting Mr. Nour can in no way be considered an affront or interference with the Egyptian judicial system and that its sole purpose is to gather first-hand information from the person concerned himself;
4. Believes also that authorizing the visit to Mr. Nour would constitute a further demonstration of Egypt's attachment to human rights and transparency and follow the practice of many other countries which allow and even encourage such visits;
5. Earnestly hopes, in the light of the Committee's increasing concerns in this case, especially as regards Mr. Nour's health, that the mission can go ahead as quickly as possible in order that, at its next session on the occasion of the 119th IPU Assembly (October 2008), it may have the benefit of the information gathered by the Committee;
6. Requests the Committee to inform the authorities and the sources accordingly.


Ayman is one of over 20,000 political prisioners in Egypt

Empowering The Silent Majority With Conditional Aid To Egypt
By Karim (Egypt/Lebanon)
Sunday, June 17th, 2007

Since I last posted here, the U.S House of Representatives voted to conditionally hold back $200 million in military aid to Egypt, dependant on progress made by the Mubarak regime concerning democratic reforms and human rights abuses. This measure has been the subject of much debate for a while now, in light of Egypt's rapidly deteriorating credibility on rights and democracy. The numerous arrests of political opponents, cyber-dissidents and successive failures to hold legitimate elections have caused some to challenge the real-politik view that funding autocratic regimes in the Middle East is in the interest of America and the world's power structure. Read more. . .


Egyptian arrests may be linked to political crackdown
By Michael Slackman
Friday, June 15, 2007

CAIRO: Heavily armed police officers woke the Said family at 2 a.m. with pounding on the front door. The parents dressed quickly as their two children drifted between sleep and fear. The police seized books, documents and computer equipment. They blindfolded the father, Abdellatif Muhammad Said, 40, and took him away. Read more. . .


Egypt Criticizes American Stipulations For Aid
June 16, 2007 1:44 p.m. EST
Joseph S. Mayton - AHN Middle East Correspondent

Cairo, Egypt (AHN) - The Egyptian government has said that American military and economic aid to the country is vital to "American interests in the Middle East." It has asked Washington to reconsider establishing preconditions for much of the money. The cry comes after the United States House Appropriations Committee called for the withholding of $200 million in military aid to Egypt until it curbs police abuses, reforms its judicial system and ends arms smuggling into Gaza from its soil. Read more. . .


Case continues

The fate of imprisoned opposition leader Ayman Nour is still unsettled, reports Mona El-Nahhas

The Administrative Court announced on Tuesday that any decision on whether Al-Ghad Party leader Ayman Nour will be released must wait until 26 June, when official medical reports into the opposition leader's state of health -- asked for on 22 May -- are due to be issued. Meanwhile, the court ruled that Nour's defence counsel -- who had complained of procrastination in preparing the official report -- could present evidence from independent medical specialists regarding their client's health. Read more . . .


Mubarak too old for change - report
June 13 2007 at 03:45PM

Cairo - Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has told US President George Bush he considers himself too old to carry out political reforms, an Egyptian dissident who met Bush said in an interview published on Wednesday.

"President Bush told me that President Mubarak claims that age has caught up with him and he is incapable of change, so let's leave this to the next generation," sociologist Saadeddin Ibrahim told the independent newspaper al-Dustour. Read more. . .


U.S. House panel votes to withhold some Egypt aid
12 Jun 2007 18:55:42 GMT
Source: Reuters
By Richard Cowan

WASHINGTON, June 12 (Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday advanced legislation aimed at pressuring Egypt to improve its human rights record by withholding some military aid until progress is made.

The House Appropriations Committee approved a wide-ranging foreign aid bill for next year that would hold back $200 million in military funds for Egypt until the close U.S. ally takes steps to curb police abuses, reform its judicial system and stop weapons smuggling from Egypt to Gaza. The measures, included in a $34.2 billion foreign aid bill for fiscal 2008, which starts on Oct. 1, still must be debated by the full House and the Senate. Overall, Egypt would receive $1.3 billion in grants next year, out of $4.5 billion to all countries, to help Cairo buy military hardware and finance military training from the United States. This is in addition to U.S. economic aid. Read More. . .


From Monsters and Critics.com

Middle East News Cairo court postpones Ayman Nour's release decision
By DPA
Jun 12, 2007, 11:19 GMT

Cairo - A Cairo administrative court decided Tuesday to postpone a court session about releasing imprisoned opposition leader Ayman Nour not receiving a report from medical authorities on his health condition.

Three medical consultants are expected to give a report about Nour's medical condition, which is believed to be serous.

Earlier May 31, a Cairo criminal court rejected Nour's release on parole based on his medical condition. Read More. . .


The Conference on Democracy and Security
Joshua Muravchik - 6.11.2007 - 2:18PM

With the U.S. military effort in Iraq having bogged down, with Islamists winning elections in Egypt and the Palestinian territories, with the rebirth of democracy in Lebanon thwarted by Syrian and Iranian intervention, the momentum of George W. Bush's foreign policy, which had flowed high in the "Arab spring" of 2005, has ebbed. The Conference on Democracy and Security, which met in Prague June 4-6, grew out of former Soviet dissident and leading Israeli intellectual Natan Sharansky's sense of the need to reinvigorate the Bush administration's flagging project of promoting democracy in the Middle East. Read More. . .


How to Be A Dissident President

A Chance for Bush To Live Up to His Words

By Jackson Diehl
Monday, June 11, 2007; Page A17

Prodded by Natan Sharansky and Vaclav Havel, President Bush last week reprised his second inaugural address, calling himself a "dissident president . . . standing for liberty in the world." For the most part, he bashed enemies of the United States that also happen to be dictatorships -- regimes such as Belarus and Cuba, Burma and Zimbabwe. For good measure he brought up Russia, China and Venezuela, countries the United States does business with but that are not allies. Read more. . .


Bush Is Losing Credibility On Democracy, Activists Say

Governments Appear Quicker to Challenge U.S. Rebukes
By Robin Wright
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, June 10, 2007; Page A19

President Bush waxed eloquent about democracy in Prague's majestic Czernin Palace last week, pledging to the assembled dissidents from 17 countries that the United States "will never excuse your oppressors" and, "We will always stand for your freedom." It was the centerpiece speech of his European tour. But the scorecard for the Bush administration, four years after it began promoting democracy as the key to the United States' long-term security, shows it striking out, according to analysts and activists who originally endorsed the president's efforts. Democracy regression is visible from Hugo Chavez's Venezuela, a country that was the first democracy in Latin America, to Vladimir Putin's Russia, where the Soviet demise triggered political changes worldwide 15 years ago. Read more. . .


Daily Press Briefing
Tom Casey, Deputy Spokesman
Washington, DC June 7, 2007


INDEX:

EGYPT

President Bush's Appeal to Release Ayman Nour

Read more. . .


Light at the end of Nour's tunnel?

Will opposition leader Ayman Nour be released, asks Mona El-Nahhas

"I look forward to the day when conferences like this one include... Ayman Nour of Egypt," said US President George W Bush during a speech elivered on Tuesday in the Czech Republic on the theme of spreading democracy. It may not be the first time the US has demanded the release of the jailed opposition leader, though it is the first time the US president has uttered that request. Indeed, Nour's wife, Gamila Ismail, recently accused Washington of ignoring her husband's imprisonment in an attempt to woo Cairo's support across a range of regional issues. Read more. . .


Bush Comments Bring Cairo's Scourn

June 7, 2007 1:24 p.m. EST

Joseph S. Mayton - AHN Middle East Correspondent

Cairo, Egypt (AHN) - An international conference in Prague, Czech Republic, sparked a small feud between the United States and Egypt following an address by U.S. President George W. Bush earlier this week. Bush mentioned Ayman Nour as an opposition leader that he would like to see released from prison in order to increase democracy in Egypt, but the Foreign Ministry in Cairo has condemned his comments, calling them "unacceptable." Read more. . .


President Bush Delivers Remarks In Prague

CQ Transcripts Wire
Tuesday, June 5, 2007; 9:52 AM

PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: President Ilves, Foreign Minister Swarzenberg, and distinguished guests: Laura and I are pleased to be back in Prague, and we appreciate the gracious welcome to this historic hall. Tomorrow I will attend the G-8 Summit, where I will meet with the leaders of the world's most powerful economies. This afternoon, I stand with men and women who represent an even greater power -- the power of human conscience.

In this room are dissidents and democratic activists from 17 countries on five continents. You follow different traditions -- you practice different faiths -- and you face different challenges. But you are united by an unwavering conviction: that freedom is the non- negotiable right of every man, woman, and child -- and the path to lasting peace in our world. Read more. . .


U.S. Policy: Back to the Future
By Michael Rubin
Posted: Monday, June 4, 2007

ARTICLES
Aspenia (June 2007)
Publication Date: June 4, 2007

On January 20, 2005, after President George W. Bush took his second oath of office, he delivered an address in which he laid out his vision for his second term. In his speech, he reiterated his intention to tie U.S. policy to be the promotion of freedom and democracy abroad. "All who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know: the United States will not ignore your oppression, or excuse your oppressors. When you stand for your liberty, we will stand with you," he declared.[1] Many European commentators were aghast. Robin Cook, the former British foreign secretary, wrote in The Guardian, London's left-wing flagship, that "On the very day when the president set forward his mission to bring liberty to the world, a poll revealed that a large majority of inhabitants believe that he will actually make it more dangerous."[2] The conservative Daily Telegraph questioned whether Bush's "ringing encomium of freedom" could survive Iraq.[3] Spain's El Pais, Germany's Die Tageszeitung, and Austria's Die Presse all expressed concern. Sueddeutsche Zeitung observed, "The whole world is seeking an answer . . . to the question of whether George Bush will really be a changed president in his second term."[4] Read more. . .


Egyptian Court Rejects Appeal for Nour's Release
By Cache Seel
Cairo
31 May 2007

An Egyptian court has refused opposition leader Ayman Nour's request for early release from prison. Nour, who ran against President Mubarak in Egypt's only contested presidential election, made the appeal for health reasons. Reporter Cache Seel has details from Cairo. Read more. . .


Egypt: Mark New UN Post by Ending Abuses
25 May 2007 20:36:10 GMT
Source: Human Rights Watch
Reuters and AlertNet are not responsible for the content of this article or for any external internet sites.

The views expressed are the author's alone. (Cairo, May 26, 2007) ? Following Egypt's election last week to the UN Human Rights Council, the government should immediately fulfill the pledges it made in campaigning for the seat, Human Rights Watch and the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) said in a briefing paper released today. In a 13-page briefing paper, "Human Rights Council Membership Requires Steps to Address Violations," Human Rights Watch and the EIPR said that Egypt's terrible human rights record made that country a poor choice for membership. They nevertheless welcomed the Egyptian government's public pledges to improve its practices domestically and to strengthen the capacity of the council. Read more. . .


Egypt court fails to free jailed opposition leader

Tue 22 May 2007, 14:43 GMT

By Mohamed Abdellah

CAIRO (Reuters) - An Egyptian court refused to immediately release jailed Egyptian opposition leader Ayman Nour from prison on health grounds on Tuesday but asked for a panel of doctors to have another look at medical reports on his case.

The ruling by the Administrative Court dashed the hopes of Nour's supporters, who were encouraged to read in the state newspaper al-Ahram on Tuesday morning that the court was expected to set him free after some 18 months in prison.

Some broke down in tears in the courtroom and others shouted out: "Down, down with (President) Hosni Mubarak". Read more here. . .


Egyptian court review raises hopes of release for opposition leader

The Associated Press
Tuesday, May 22, 2007

CAIRO, Egypt: An administrative court said Tuesday it would review the case of a prominent Egyptian opposition leader, raising hopes the detained politician could be released soon on medical grounds.

The court said it adjourned until June 12 to wait for a report from medical experts on whether prolonged detention was endangering the health of Ayman Nour, who was jailed in December 2005 shortly after challenging Hosni Mubarak for the presidency.

Nour, 42, finished a distant second in Egypt's first contested presidential elections. He was jailed on charges he forged signatures on petitions to register his party, Al-Ghad, as an official party in 2004.

The court's announcement came as state-owned Al-Ahram daily newspaper announced on its front page that Nour would be released on Tuesday, raising hopes among his family, lawyers and supporters, his wife Gamila Ismail told AP.

Last year, Nour, a diabetic who depends on insulin, underwent cardiovascular surgery while in prison. Read more here. . .

 

04/24/07

Forensic Medicine Report Warns Of: "Sudden Death" For Ayman Nour We Expose Lies They Published and Promoted Secret File To whom benefit; Fallacy And Changing Realities Reach Up To This Limit

The forensic medicine report edited on 25th., of January 25, the sickness condition of Dr. Ayman Nour, the report committee consisted of president of forensic medicine sector, and head of forensic medicine physicians Dr. Moustafa Ayman Fouda, and his assistant Dr. Kamal Al-Sa'adani, as well as, Brigadier Doctor Kamel Mohamed Ebeid, representative of Medical Department in Prisons Authority, report exposed the following:

 

In the interest of reaching the fallacy of the facts of adversity and to this extent?! And up to when the silence?

 

 

 

 

04/24/07

13-A document from the oral medicine and teeth implanting by Dr. Bassem Samir on 2/10/2006, indicating that patient Ayman Nour suffers from corrosion in the upper and lower maxillas due to diabetics He needs maxilla bone implanting and teeth implantation.

14- Report by Dr. Fahim Abdul Azeem Ragab the director of critical cases that is referred Prof. Ashraf Hatem G. director of Cairo university hospital indicating that the patient suffers long ago from blood hypertension and glycosuria, coronary artery malfunction, frequent coma, and dyspena, Moreover, the patient needs catheterization to image the mitral arteries.

15- Ultra sonic rays on heart (patient: Ayman Nour on 6/12/2006 issued from the critical cases and concluding that the patient has impaired LV relaxation and simple recess in the mitral value.

16- Report of ultra sound abdominal x-rays and pelvis at the diagnostic radiology dept, Cairo university hospitals on 6/12/2006, patient: Ayman Nour. The report concluded that the patient suffers from simple fatty liver and prostatic swelling , and prostatic with coarse stoning.

17- Doppler colored report on vertebro-basilar-insufficiency symptom and external pressure (tension) on the bone protrusions of the cervical vertebrae. The report made and signed by Dr. Abu Al - Magd on 6/12/2006.

18- A report of vasiongraph for the patient :Ayman Abdul Aziz Nour made and signed by Dr. Fahim Ragab, Prof. of critical medicine and Dr. Ahmed Abdul Aziz, Ass. Lecturer of medical critical cases, Cairo University. The same report was issued from the hospitals of Cairo universities indicating occurrence of arteriosclerosis change in the mitral (coronary artery ).

19- MRI report for the patient: Ayman Nour on 6/12/2006, signed by Dr. Rami Edward , indicating the following . a- Bone protrusions, simple coarseness in the cervical vertebrae. b - Simple cartilage olisthy ( spondrlosis ) , in the cervical vertebrae 5/6, 6/7.

20- Two MRI reports,of patient Ayman Nour on 6/12/2006, indicating pathological changes and knee (two) leakage signed by Prof. Dr. Hazem Muharram issued from Kasr Il - Einy hospital , MRI unit.

Second : Legal (Forensic) Medicine :

1- Report No. 10 legal (forensic) medicine.

2- Report No. 10 forensic jails medicine on 8/2/2005 , the report proved under item 15 , page 4 , the report of senior forensic physician, that will be shown later on under item II of our consultant report. The report No. 10 jails forensic medicine proved the following:

The above mentioned patient was referred to Al-Maial Educational / Hospital , where a medical committee was formed to examine the patient. The committee said there is so severe medical problem at present and advised appropriate medical care plus indicated treatment with insulin to avoid heart and brain disorders. The patient proved suffering from glycosurea, high blood tension cholesterol and salts on the right kidney.

II - Legal medical report of the convict Ayman Abdul Aziz Nour in the case No. 184/2006 south Cairo investigation processing , made by a committee formed by the senior forensic doctors, Dr. Mostafa Ayman Mahmoud Fouda his assistant Dr. Kamal Al - Saadani , and Dr. Eid Kamal Mohamad (Lt- general physician in the jails medical dept. The report proved the following:

1- First page, the line before the last, "Heart arrythemia (heats & frequency).

2- Second page, (Last two lines) + first two lines in the 3rd page, the patient suffers from a chest pain, 8 yrs ago with blood high tension controlled by treatment. The patient suffers from diabetics, and treated with insulin, and has dangerous factors leading to mitral arteries deterioration, smoking , obesity , diabetic and fatty blood.

3- The 3rd page, item 7, the patient had a car accident in 5/9/1998, cervical spondylosis (side right posterior between indicates post nervous changes ).

4- Page 3, item 9, the report proved that, with MRI, a cervical spondylosis between 6/7 cervical vertebrae.

5- Page 3: item 10. the report proved degenerative change in the cervical cartilage between vertebrae 6/7 .

6- Page 3, item 13, the report proved that the patient was admitted to the hospital in coma for 10 min. the exams showed arrythemia , and hyperglycemia .

7- Page 5, line 12, 14 the report proved on 9/11/2006 that the patient has a long case history, and made a catheterization with bracket 5 years ago, and he is under treatment of diabetics, hypertension and heart diseases.

8- Page 6 item 17: The report indicated that , after a car accident in 1998 , a simple dislocation between the cervical vertebrae 6/6 due to cutting of ties , which resulted in pressure on the spinal cord , loss of sensation in the hand fists, the patient case did not respond to neck fix at or physiotherapy. The patient needed to travel abroad where his case improved partially but he suffered from pressure on the cervical spinal cord. Item 17: Concluded that "the patient is recommended to specialized physiotherapy to avoid quadruple paralysis.

9- Page 8 , proved at the last paragraph tachycardia 95/ min.

10-Page 9, line 6, tachycardia 94/ min, line 24, tachycardia 94 /min .

11- Page 11, the report on 22/4/2006 , indicated that a medical committee of 6 physician was formed and presented a report stating: there is no severe medical problem at this time but the appropriated medical care is recommend so that non-compliance with insulin regular treatment may lead to disorder in blood sugar and damage both the heart and brain.

12- Page 12 , paragraph 4 , the report made by Dr. Magdi Fawzi Henaidi (British - Egyptian ) indicated that the patient upon examination was found suffering from :

1- Nervous colonists .

2- Chonic pelvic inflammations

3- severe prostatic inflammation

4- Hyperglycosuria.

5- Hyperglycocemia.

6- Sugar deficiency attacks (Fits)

7- The patient had previously heart catheterization made by Prof. Dr. Ezz El - Din al - Sawi, and needs another one.

d- The patient was recommended to be examined by cardiologist and vassalages to check his heart case and enlarge coronary arteries.

13- Page 13 , paragraph 6 , the report indicated that the legal doctor :George Barrakat Nassif , from fronsic medical staff examined the patient on 12/7/2006 and found no sign which seen by that legal doctor.

14- Page 12' paragraph 7 , the report by Prof .Dr . Amrou Ahmed Gad , Prof . of blood Vessels surgery in Cairo university hospitals indicated that the patient suffers from foot inflammated nerve ends .

15- Page 12 , last paragraph , the report by Prof .Dr . EZZ . El - Din Al - Saway , the Cardiologist indicated that the patient suffers from :

a- Hyperglycosuria .

b- Hypertension blood .

c- Mitral Malfunction .

d- The patient had diagnostic catheterization of the coronary arteries with brackets , chest pains and arrythemia .

16- Page 13, paragraph 5 , on 14/6/2006 the patient was examined by a medical committee in his jail , the medical committee in his Jail the medical committee was formed by the legal doctor and head of medical directorate upon decision of the G.A ( general attorney ) International Cooperation Bureau ,No . / 347 on 22/8/2006 . the report has been released yet . ( N.B the actual report was executed on 25/1/2007 )

17- Page 13 , the report indicated that pulse 108 / min .

18- Page 17 , item 4 : the report indicated the following .

Mr1 made on 6/12 /2006 showed that the patient suffers from 1 st class degeneration in the posterior born of the crescent cartilage joint of the two knee with a little mal in the right knee with album in reaction and little focuses from mucous degeneration in the crescent cartilage joint posterior horn with side dilation of the knee patella with other sound parts.

b- Fatty liver . c- Coarse sediment in kidney .

c- Simple prismatic inflation ( swelling)

d- The oculist and surgeon Aymen Fawzi G 1/12/2006 Indicating that the patient suffers from simple changes in retina .

e- On 18/12/2006 a catheterization was made in heart arteries , the examination result came in CD , and suffers from theological effects and recommended for medical treatment.

19- The report indicated in page 19 , what we previously proved of cervical vertebrae , knees ,liver fats prostatic enlargement , the report indicated also that the patient suffers from hyperglycemia and blood hypertension .

The patient suffers form high sugar rate in blood with blood hypertaension syndrome that reported by medicine of critical cases Kasy - el - Eini sherif Mukhtar , Because of this cronic syndrome , the patient found to be suffering from .

- Simple changes due to diabetics in retina .

- Atheroma in metal arteries ( heart catheterization ).

- The report indicated that the patient needs : medical treatment , special food system . -

20- page 20,item 3 the report indicated that , on examining the end blood vessels in the two legs , sign of limbs blood circulation deficiency appeared in a form of coldness in the lower limbs , and sign of simple thickness in their blood vessels.

21- pages 20 , 21 item 4 : the report showed hyperglycosuria syndrome , of long effect , the case applies to the convict herein .

This syndrome has many complications effecting the various blood vessels .

a- The limbar blood circle has effects on the lower limbs that may lead to glycol foot or glycogangrene .

b- This syndrome may lead to changes in vision due to affected retina caused by hyperglycosura (cronic) .

c- This syndrome affects the heart by narrowing the heart mitral blood vessels ,

that may cause sudden death by heart attack .

This may occur without obvious sign .

This syndrome may affects sensation which lessen feeling .

22- The committee headed by the senior legal doctor concluded that the general health case of the convict upon examination allows his continuation in his jail , (confinement ) with any danger or threat of life now if he is put under medical care of the jail specialized hospital for continuous treatment and observation .

 

THE EXAMINATION OF THE SUBMITTED PAPERS INDICATED THAT THE CONVICT
IS SO SICK THAT HIS LIFE IS THREATENED BY A TOTAL OR PARTIAL IMPAIRMENT ( DISABILITY ) .

 

 

02/24/07 "The latest example of this attitude was the imprisonment of Ghad Party leader Ayman Nour. It is high time the regime recognised that it is its attitude of zero tolerance to the liberal opposition that has led to the rise of extremist religious forces such as the Muslim Brotherhood." Osama El-Ghazali Harb, editor of Al-Ahram International Politics magazine

OPEN LETTER TO PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH

Open Letter to President Bush re: democracy promotion
Dear Mr. President:
As Arab and Muslim intellectuals and activists concerned about the promotion of democracy in our region, we urge you to reaffirm—in words and actions—America's commitment to sustained democratic reform in the Arab world. It is our belief that the main problem with U.S. policies in the Middle East (in particular in Iraq, Palestine, and elsewhere) is precisely their failure to live to America’s democratic ideals of liberty and justice for all. We have been heartened by the strong commitment to liberty you had expressed in your November 2003 speech at the National Endowment for Democracy and then your second inaugural address, when you said that "All who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know: the United States will not ignore your oppression, or excuse your oppressors. When you stand for your liberty, we will stand with you."
Despite some initial skepticism, those statements nurtured hope in our region. We realize that democracy is not easily attained and must ultimately come from within. But it can receive encouragement and support, both of which it badly needs today in Arab countries. The minimum support the people of the region yearn for is precisely what you have undertaken in your NED speech: to break with 60 years of US support for non-democratic regimes in the region, and to make that known to the world in unequivocal terms. This would be more consistent with the principles of the United States, which has, since its birth, been intimately connected with the ideals of democratic governance enshrined in its founding documents—ideals that speak to all generations and peoples everywhere.
We know that some in the United States, worried by recent Islamist gains among voters in Palestine and Egypt, are having doubts about the wisdom of pushing for freedom and democracy in the Middle East. These worries are exploited by despots in the region to perpetuate the untenable status quo. However, there is no way to advance liberty without inclusion of all elements that are willing to abide by democratic rules, and reject violence. Democratic participation is the only way to combat extremism and pressure all groups, including Islamists, to moderate their stance in order to maximize their share of the vote. The US should continue to press for an end to regime repression of democratically spirited liberal and Islamist groups, and to emphatically distance itself from such repression and condemn it in the strongest terms whenever and wherever it occurs. We are confident that if Arab citizens are able to have their choice, they will choose democracy, freedom, peace and progress.
A return to the pre-9/11 status quo is not the answer. It will only embolden ruling autocrats, hurt Arab reformers, and damage America's credibility. In the end, it will probably strengthen the very forces that America fears. The shore of reform is the only one on which any lights appear even though the journey demands courage, patience, and perseverance.
Perhaps emboldened by the impression that America is wavering in its support for democracy, some autocrats have recently intensified repression. This makes the need for sustained U.S. and international support and pressure more urgent than ever. The region needs to hear again that the course of freedom and democracy is the only course which America, guided by both interest and principle, will support.
To mention but one case where U.S. influence may do much good, Egypt has lately seen a regime crackdown on opposition activists. In February, the government postponed municipal elections and renewed the emergency law. The regime has not even spared Egypt's venerable judiciary which has steadfastly proclaimed its independence in recent months. And liberal opposition politician Ayman Nour, who was allowed to run in last year’s presidential election and won 7.6% of the popular vote, second behind President Mubarak, was arrested and sentenced in a murky process to five years in jail. The health of Mr. Nour, a dear friend and colleague of many of us, continues to deteriorate. We pray that you will take his case to heart and let the Egyptian regime hear your concerns. Hundreds of other activists (including doctors, university professors, journalists and civil society activists) whose only crime was to express their desire for freedom, continue to languish in jail andicular in Iraq, Palestine, and elsewhere) is precisely their failure to live to America’s democratic ideals of liberty and justice for all. We have been heartened by the strong commitment to liberty you had expressed in your November 2003 speech at the National Endowment for Democracy and then your second inaugural address, when you said that "All who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know: the United States will not ignore your oppression, or excuse your oppressors. When you stand for your liberty, we will stand with you."
Despite some initial skepticism, those statements nurtured hope in our region. We realize that democracy is not easily attained and must ultimately come from within. But it can receive encouragement and support, both of which it badly needs today in Arab countries. The minimum support the people of the region yearn for is precisely what you have undertaken in your NED speech: to break with 60 years of US support for non-democratic regimes in the region, and to make that known to the world in unequivocal terms. This would be more consistent with the principles of the United States, which has, since its birth, been intimately connected with the ideals of democratic governance enshrined in its founding documents—ideals that speak to all generations and peoples everywhere.
We know that some in the United States, worried by recent Islamist gains among voters in Palestine and Egypt, are having doubts about the wisdom of pushing for freedom and democracy in the Middle East. These worries are exploited by despots in the region to perpetuate the untenable status quo. However, there is no way to advance liberty without inclusion of all elements that are willing to abide by democratic rules, and reject violence. Democratic participation is the only way to combat extremism and pressure all groups, including Islamists, to moderate their stance in order to maximize their share of the vote. The US should continue to press for an end to regime repression of democratically spirited liberal and Islamist groups, and to emphatically distance itself from such repression and condemn it in the strongest terms whenever and wherever it occurs. We are confident that if Arab citizens are able to have their choice, they will choose democracy, freedom, peace and progress.
A return to the pre-9/11 status quo is not the answer. It will only embolden ruling autocrats, hurt Arab reformers, and damage America's credibility. In the end, it will probably strengthen the very forces that America fears. The shore of reform is the only one on which any lights appear even though the journey demands courage, patience, and perseverance.
Perhaps emboldened by the impression that America is wavering in its support for democracy, some autocrats have recently intensified repression. This makes the need for sustained U.S. and international support and pressure more urgent than ever. The region needs to hear again that the course of freedom and democracy is the only course which America, guided by both interest and principle, will support.
To mention but one case where U.S. influence may do much good, Egypt has lately seen a regime crackdown on opposition activists. In February, the government postponed municipal elections and renewed the emergency law. The regime has not even spared Egypt's venerable judiciary which has steadfastly proclaimed its independence in recent months. And liberal opposition politician Ayman Nour, who was allowed to run in last year’s presidential election and won 7.6% of the popular vote, second behind President Mubarak, was arrested and sentenced in a murky process to five years in jail. The health of Mr. Nour, a dear friend and colleague of many of us, continues to deteriorate. We pray that you will take his case to heart and let the Egyptian regime hear your concerns. Hundreds of other activists (including doctors, university professors, journalists and civil society activists) whose only crime was to express their desire for freedom, continue to languish in jail and suffer torture and police brutality. This brutality often included sexual molestation and public humiliation of women activists and journalists by pro-government thugs.
As you have argued, the war against terror and extremism can only be won by helping Middle Eastern countries reform their closed political systems. As societies become more open, citizens can voice their grievances through legitimate, democratic means, making them less likely to resort to violence. You are right to believe that democracy and pluralism point the way to peace and moderation.
We hope that you will consider our words, recall how much is at stake in the Arab world, and ponder how costly silence and mixed signals can be when freedom is under assault. We entreat you to do everything you can to ensure that a small number of authoritarian rulers will not control the future of more than 300 million Arabs, more than half of whom are not yet 20 years old. Freedom and democracy are the only way to build a world where violence is replaced by peaceful public debate and political participation, and despair is substituted by hope, tolerance and dignity.
Sincerely,
Name Organization Country

September 2006 "1 YEAR FROM THE ELECTIONS"

Statement by Nour's family on the anniversary of the presidential elections in Egypt.

This week marks the anniversary of the first presidential elections in Egypt's history which took place on September 7, 2005. This week also Dr. Ayman Nour, leader of Al-Ghad party and the second candidate according to the results of the presidential elections, almost completes one year in prison for allegedly having forged Al-Ghad party powers-of-attorney.
We receive both events with contradicting feelings due to the severe deterioration in Nour's health after having suffered coronary artery, diabetes and high blood pressure complications. Thus, continuing to enforce the five-year sentence would represent a death sentence to Nour, a matter organized by Article 36 of the law governing prisons which deals with release for medical reasons. This issue is also governed by Article 149 of the Egyptian Constitution which entitles the President exclusive authority to grant pardon or reduce the sentence.
Dear Sir,
Today there are people celebrating the one year anniversary of the election considering it a sign of democratic progress. There are also those who believe it useful for the President to use the exclusive authority vested in him by the Constitution by suspending the penalty or considering the year Nour spent in prison sufficient due to the extremely hard conditions, the unjust and harsh treatment he was subjected to. It has become clear that those who wish to show their ability in serving the regime are focusing on harassing Nour through depriving him of his basic human right guaranteed by the Constitution and the Prisons Law.
It is enough to point out the decision to prevent him from writing in a clear violation of the Constitution, the law and prison regulations. He was also prevented from receiving treatment and having an urgent artery operation at his own expense. Moreover, he is under 24-hour surveillance in prison, prevent from movement and correspondence in violation of the law and prison regulations. He is also prevented from receiving the special food for his health condition from outside the prison which led him to go on hunger strike more than once in objection. The Administrative Judiciary Court is also considering a number of relevant lawsuits, the decision related to the first of which is expected on 26 September.
We appeal to you for immediate intervention to save Ayman Nour's life and for a wise call for a stance that takes all the conditions of the case, which we do not wish to go into now and which are known to everyone, into consideration.
We are not asking to give Nour an equal treatment as singers, artists and others. We only call for observing the circumstances, harms and health risks and respond to a request submitted to the President months ago by 110 current parliament representatives to release Nour through a Presidential Decree in accordance with the Constitution.
The President's response at this time in particular to the request of about one-third of the parliament representing the nation has major implications. It is worth calling for and moving to achieve to save the life of an Egyptian citizen who, on 7 September 2005, obtained over half a million votes.
Dear Sir,
We address this message to you due to our confidence in your sincere patriotism and your ability to make an effort in line with the dedication we know you enjoy to your convictions and the ideas you adopt that transcend political and party differences.
We hope the God grants success to you efforts on our behalf.
Ayman Nour's small and larger families
Signature

August 2006

Dear All,

We appeal to each of you to not forget about Egypt.

We are referring to all of you: employees, members of the Parliament, teachers, U.S. State Department employees, researchers, retired people, etc. to not abandon the Egyptian civil society.

In this harsh period of war in the Middle East, the international community should not forget its duty to condemn dictators.

The crisis in the Middle East is not only regional, but also global. The international community cannot continue to give credit to dictators, hoping that they will save the situation. The international community should not fall into this trap.

Mubarak is internally very weak, but has understood that he could have a chance to continue to rule if he could act as a mediator in the crisis in the region.

In fact, "act" is really the right word. Mubarak did not manage to reach any cease-fire. Why in the world, Hamas - the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood - should listen to one of its own enemies?

However, this part of the equation did not discourage Mubarak. He flew to Saudi Arabia and asked for help from the Wahabi, knowing that they have more power than he does. So now he is "cooperating" to find a solution, showing how "good" he is, covered by the Saudis and other times by the Jordanians.

The international community is scared of the Muslim Brotherhood and they think that keeping Mubarak will help the Middle East have a "secular State" and a "valid mediator in the region."

The international community is totally wrong. In this way, it is just destroying our beloved Middle East. Mubarak, who is now "acting" as the man of Peace, is a DICTATOR no less than Bashar el-Assad.

Mubarak is the man who jailed Saad Eddin-Ibrahim under fake accusations and let him be tortured. Mubarak is the man who jailed Ayman Nour under fake accusations and deprived his sons of having a father. Mubarak is the man who has thrown in jail 20,000 political prisoners. Mubarak is the man who orders the police to stop peaceful demonstrations in the streets and allows the beatings of teenagers, who are later raped in jail by Mubarak's security forces.

Is this a man of Peace? By supporting Mubarak, the international community is not only killing hope - especially in the younger generations - but such continued support to Mubarak will be translated into internal chaos, increasing protests, demonstrations, discontent among the population, anti-westerners and anti-Semitic feelings.

If the international community wants to change the situation in the region, it can start by freeing Ayman Nour. If the international community will not do anything, we have already advised you to not be astonished when you see young people, who have lost all hope, burning with hate against the west.

In the meantime, the Egyptian civil society will continue alone its fight for democracy and freedom, trying to save itself.

July-2006

From the Family and Supporters of Prisoner of Conscience kind.

Ayman Nour to All Those Who Have a Conscience Free a few days ago over 110 parliament members representing the will of Egypt and all political trends, including the ruling party itself. submitted a signed memorandum requesting President Mubarak to use his constitutional right as stated in Article 149 to supervised release. Ayman Nour after having spent a year in prison and before the first year anniversary of the presidential election which took place in September 2005 where Nour came in second in terms of votes after which he was imprisoned in a case the meaning and na ïveté of which were clear.
After the door to litigation and appeals was shut in the manner we do not wish to discuss now. only remains this right granted by the Constitution to the President. It can not be considered as interference in the affairs of the Judiciary as it is stated in the Constitution. We can not ignore the fact that personal Constitution states that the people are the source of all authorities and share in establishing justice. Nobody represents the will of the people more than the people's representatives who have signed the document and sent it to the President to take the decision and enforce the Constitutional text in implementation of the wish of the people who have gave Nour votes that rendered him second among 10 presidential candidates, as well as in implementation of the historical, unprecedented documents as parliament representatives have not submitted a similar documents since the start of parliament life in 1886. It is no longer a valid argument or justification to say that the issue is in the hands or involves the independence of the Judiciary. It is no longer acceptable to leave Nour prey to the security authorities who exercise the worst kind of intentional exemplary punishment. torture and brutality and an intentional passive denial on part of the prosecution and the prosecutor general who refused to refer to Nour forensic doctors three months ago to prove Nour's injuries which resulted from torture and brutal treatment. The same was repeated refusal last week when the Interior Ministry celebrated the International Day Anti-Torture by placing iron cuffs on Nour's hands and feet which injured his limbs. Prosecution to date refuses to investigate these incidents. Prosecution also refuses to refer to Nour forensic doctors. Ayman Nour suffers from heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and other chronic and serious diseases which endanger his life every day because they are accompanied by the psychological stress he is subjected to on part of his jailers. He was deprived of all his rights as a prisoner. He was deprived of writing in violation of the Constitution and the Prisons' Law. He was also deprived of the right to send and receive correspondence in violation of the Prisons' Law. He was even prevented from contacting other prisoners. He is under siege and surveillance 24 hours per day. Nour was also deprived of his rights as a human being when he was denied proper treatment and referral to civilian physicians or transfer to a public hospital which obliged him during the past two weeks to write more than one request to the prosecutor general informing him that he suffers f rom an injury that puts him in danger of having his toes amputates. However, the prosecutor general ignored Nour's request. Nour thus found himself obliged to perform an operation himself in his prison cell to pull out his own toenail out without anesthesia to avoid amputation. Ayman Nour's family and supporters call upon you to support the legitimate constitutional request submitted by the people's representatives to stop the torture and abuse campaign against Ayman Nour, leader of the Ghad party. We also call upon you to submit requests to visit him to witness what he is subjected to firsthand and take the measure you deem suitable and satisfactory to your free conscience towards a citizen and a human being who has not committed any crime other than exercising his right to nomination and competition, the price of which he is paying. as well as the price of the Western support his case received fair and the price of being abandoned by all to protect their interests.

12 July 2006 New Egyptian Press Law Restricts Free Speech, U.S. Official Says Law authorizes fines on media for criticism of government

By Carolee Walker
Washington File Staff Writer

Washington -- The Egyptian government should take a close look at its new law imposing curbs on what journalists can write about in that country, said State Department spokesman Sean McCormack at a briefing July 11.

“It is essential to have a free press as part of the political dialogue within a country that is wrestling with issues of political as well as economic reform,” McCormack said. MORE . . .

Did Bush's Democracy Plan Go Poof?
Author: Max Boot, Senior Fellow for National Security Studies

July 12, 2006
Los Angeles Times

If you want to chart the downsizing of President Bush’s democracy-promotion agenda, look at the difference in his handling of Egypt between his first and second terms. MORE . . .

4 July 2006 Egyptian Liberal Ayman Nour Attacks Mubarak's Intention to Nominate His Son Gamal as Next President

3-06-2006 Novelist joins Cairo protest over police crackdown on reformists - Telegraph - By Hugh Miles Ahdaf Soueif, the Cairo-born novelist, has put aside her writing to take part in pro-democracy demonstrations that are being crushed with increasing brutality by the Egyptian police. (…) Read More:

1-06-2006 Ayman Nour's office burned in Cairo A fire has caused serious damage to the headquarters of imprisoned Egyptian opposition leader Ayman Nour. Read more:

18-05-2006 Press Conference at the European Parliament in Strasbourg with Amir Salem, Ayman Nour's lawyer, and Dr. Nour's case and violations of human rights in Egypt.

14-05-2006 Time Magazine: Dr. Nour's profile, by Scott Macleod Read more:

8-05-2006 The Trials of Ayman Nour (…) A majority of Egypt's judges are in rebellion against the regime, demanding full judicial independence (…) Wall Street Journal, Joshua Muravchik. Read more:

April -2006

Press Release
Ayman Nour and His Defense Make Serious Charges against
The Prisons' Authority in a Complaint to the Attorney General
Nour's Sons and Supporters Assaulted during Investigation at the South Cairo Prosecution

Dr. Ayman Nour, Head of the Egyptian Al-Ghad party, imprisoned on false charges for the case called "the forged powers-of-attorney" case, stood before the South Cairo prosecution where he withdrew one of the complaints he had submitted against a newspaper accusing it of defamation. Dr. Nour withdrew the complaint in solidarity with journalists in objection to issuing prison sentences against journalists for publication cases or charges.

Nour filed an urgent complaint to the South Cairo prosecution attorney general where he made a number of comments and accusations against the administration of the Tura Mazraa prison and the Ministry of Interior Prisons' Authority.

Nour's defense asked for an investigation to listen to his testimony. In the investigation Nour talked about what he described as four serious developments in his prison situation::

1.The deputy prison warden lied in the prison report number 41 Tura claiming that Nour attempted suicide. Nour and his defense emphasized before prosecution that this is a false claim that is not without basis. They added that they fear that this claim prepares for punishing him by transferring him from the hospital and performing acts of vengeance against. Nour's defense also warned against the more serious issue underlying the claims of Nour's attempted suicide prepares for killing or hurting him or threatening his life.

2.In response to a question about the reasons behind confiscation Nour's papers and articles in report number 4 conducted by the head of the Maadi prosecution, who went to the Tura prison on Monday, the prison administration affirmed having confiscated the papers that Ayman Nour, Mazaraa hospital prisoner, wrote because they found they included political insinuations against the ruling National party and Dr. Zakariya Azmy. Nour and his defense emphasized that the reasons given in the report represent a violation of the law. Moreover, this act shows that the Prisons' Authority has abused its authorities thus changing its capacity from a penitentiary to a political institution that protects the symbols of the regime and its ruling party. Lawyer Amir Salem asked prosecution to keep copies of the report number 40, 41 and attack it to the investigation documents.

3.Nour warned against the danger in placing a group of AIDS and scabies patients, chronic and contagious diseases, in the same hospital and in a room across the hall from the room that hosts many of the patients in the absence of sufficient preventive health measures which endangers the lives of many of the prisoners and Ayman Nour's life. He pointed out that this group was transferred to this room only two weeks ago.


4.Nour's defense warned against the escalating security restrictions against him in prison and while moving him from and to prosecution, as well as the use of violence against him. He pointed out that these acts are linked to attempts to influence Nour's writings, taking in consideration that a major Ministry of Interior official visited Nour on Wednesday and explicitly asked him to tone down his writings.

Meanwhile, Nour's wife Gamila Ismail, on behalf of her underage sons, filed a complaint against Transfers Department Manager General Esmat Riad and his officers and soldiers for having assaulted Nour's sons and some of his supporters while the latter tried to reach him this morning (Wednesday). South Cairo prosecution will investigate this complaint on Thursday morning, 13 April, 2006.

12-04-2006 Ayman Nour is Dying at the Tura Mazraa Prison Hospital

Ahmed Fikry

Al-Dustoor, Issue 56, Wednesday, 12 April, 2006 / 14 Rabie al-Awal 1427

Put yourself in his place.

Imagine, God forbid, that you are lying in a hospital with an AIDS patient next to you. Yes, a real AIDS patient, in the flesh and blood, with all his pain, despair and depression.

Not only are you accompanied by an AIDS patient, but, while you are a helpless prisoner, prohibited from movement you find yourself obliged to adapt to your neighbor whose skin is falling off onto the dirty tiles while his blood is seeping through his flesh due to an old and deteriorated scabies infection!!

Dr. Ayman Nour is living this tragedy in a narrow room at the Tura Mazraa prison. He was obliged to choose to stop taking his medicine or using the hospital's health care equipment for fear that he would receive an AIDS infection or be infected with the skin disease after the prison administration transferred four AIDS patients who had earlier been in isolation and three others suffering from scabies.

The obligatory mingling with the AIDS and scabies patients followed a quick surprise visit from General Mahmoud Wagdy, head of the Prison's Authority (Dr. Zakariya Azmy's friend) who asked Ayman Nour to stop writing the weekly column for the party's newspaper and refrain from talking about Gamal Mubarak. General Mahmoud Wagdy advised Ayman Nour at the end of the meeting, which took place on Thursday, to "behave himself a little!"

However, Ayman did not respond, did not behave himself and wrote his column as usual. However, this time he did not attack Gamal Mubarak but Mubarak in person. This is the article which the state security officer confiscated in the prison, refusing to deliver the column to Nour's family which led Nour to file a complaint to the Maadi prosecution accusing the Interior Minister, the Head of the Prisons Authority, the prison warden, the head of the prison's investigations and the state security officer of attempting to morally murder him because writing is Nour's only means of interacting and communicating with people. He also complained about plots to murder him.

In objection, Nour let his beard grow and completely refused to allow the prison barber to visit him. These objection measures on part of Nour worsened his already deteriorated health condition. He suffered from a kidney attack and had to inject himself despite not being qualified or trained. He was obliged to use medicine and medical equipment that his family buys. Such practices resulted in sores and wounds in his arms and the veins of his hands, and left black spots all over his body. Moreover, the diabetes symptoms worsened resulting in swollen feet and face, in addition to general exhaustion believed by those close to him to be an attempt on part of the regime to kill him indirectly, unlike the case with others who were killed directly!

This means that Ayman Nour, the prisoner who is in the custody and under the responsibility of the Interior Ministry may be liquidated through deteriorating health conditions. This plot is very similar to the case with Mahmoud Nour Eddin, the Egypt Revolution organization leader who was accused of killing Zionists. Mahmoud Nour Eddin had died, according to the prison's medical report, due to a severe and sudden enlargement of the brain, heart, kidneys, liver and all the vital organs. It is a strange case that doctors at the Kasr al-Eini hospital explain could have been induced by toxic material that entered the body through food or otherwise, according to Lawyer Khaled Talaat.

The exceptional measures taken against Ayman Nour were not restricted to surrounding him with contagious diseases or rumors at the prison hospital. He was even deprived of visits. The prison administration refused to allow his visitors to enter on Sunday (the Prophet's birthday). Only his wife and children were allowed to see him at the time when visits and the number of visitors were open to all other prisoners on the occasion of the Prophet's birthday.

Prior to that, his correspondence was completely prevented in contradiction with the Constitution which guarantees the right to correspondence between prisoners, their families and lawyers.

Within the framework of tough measures, three informants were appointed to watch Ayman Nour even when he goes to the toilet. The deputy warden joined the plot by checking on Nour's cell every hour.

Moreover, the prison administration completely refused to allow the al-Borg laboratory physician brought by Nour's family to obtain a blood sample. The sample will be obtained at prosecution on Wednesday.

The measures to restrict Nour's medical care coincided with measures to restrict his media access and preventing him from writing at an important and serious timing when the Court of Cassation is to consider his case.

The European Parliament had drawn the attention to the fact that Counselor Salah al-Bory, head of the Cassation circuit which considers Nour's appeal, is the same judge in charge of investigation with the judges. The European Parliament expressed concern that the head of the circuit had not �during his career- accepted any of the Cassation cases presented to him.

These violent and unfair measures against Nour took place on the week following the session of the Approvals Committee at the US Congress where members called for stopping USAID to Egypt because, in addition to imprisoning Nour, Egypt has not made any progress towards political reform.

4-04-2006 I support the petition in favour of Mr Ayman Nour, unjustly imprisonned in Egypt.
Alain Lamassoure, Member of the European Parliament. (EPP, France)

March 2006

Following is an update on Nour:
1. He is still at Turrah prison hospital. In the room next to him lies a suspected case of Aids, and another case of a serious skin disease.
2. He is still allowed to write and send his articles to the weekly mouthpiece of El-Ghad party.
3. The main prison police staff, Mayor and other senior officers, were sacked as a punishment for informing him inside on the same day that his family came to visit and was sent back twice at the main entrance. This raised suspicion that he might have won the sympathy of the security staff and therefore they were replaced.
4. Nour is being questioned for 17 new charges, since mid february. New charges include assaulting and injuring members of the ruling party on the day of the presidential elections, insulting and distorting the image of Egypt's regime symbols and President of the state, erecting an idol (statue of a famous musician in the middle of a square), Calling Mubarak names such as "loser" and "failure" and "forgerer", and forging his birth certificate and his parents names.
5. He will still face other charges and will be called in for questioning again next week.
6. Nour's wife now faces three charges that were raised before her departure to attend a conference in Washington. Charges are raised by police officers claiming that she assaulted and injured a police officer during parliamentary elections, and the other claiming that she assaulted him at one of the demonstrations, causing a severe injury and damaging his camera and insulting in banners and slogans the president of the state.
7. The cassation court (Supreme court which decides whether to accept or reject the request of the appeal) will decide on Nour's defense's appeal on May 18, 2006. The 5-members tribunal is headed by Judge Salah El Borgy (Who -off the record- happens to be the same judge who will handle the case of the Egyptian judges who announced that the 2005 elections were forged and who are currently being questioned for their press statments as a punishment ).
The tribunal is expected to choose one of three alternatives on the same day:
a. Accept the reasons given in the defense appeals reports and Acquit Nour and sends him free. OR
b. Accept the reasons and requests given in the defense appeal reports and orders to send Nour for a retrial at another court and sends him free on the same day. OR
c. Rejects the appeal and continues to consider him convicted and keeps him jailed.

27-03-2006 Democracy on the Nile. The story of Ayman Nour and Egypt's problematic attempt at free elections. By Abigail Lavin, The Weekly Standard. Read the article

25-03-2006 Demonstration in front of the White House, sponsored by Freedom House and the Ibn Khaldun Centre. Press Release

16-03-2006 Wife of Imprisoned Egyptian Al-Ghad Party Leader: "Dictatorship Leads to Extremism and Terrorism"

15-03-2006 Till when the arab people will be hostage of dictatorship... Before Ayman Nour, then fake charges against his wife Gameela Ismail, now the journalist Amira Malsh was found guilty of libelling judge Atia Mohamed Awad in a story published in the independent weekly Al-Fagr in July. She was sentenced to one year in prison and forced labour.Enough! Enough! Free Ayman Nour! Free Amira Malsh!Free the Arab people!

8-03-06 Letter from Jana Hybaskova, member of the European Parliament, Popular party group, Czech Republic:

I was visiting stolen elections in Cairo, I met Ayman last year in his office, I fully support his great wife whom we met close to polling station... The rule
of law is the key to democracy. Democracy is the only key towards peace and stability in the Middle East.
As a former Ambassador to the region, I kindly ask all Egyptian opinion and decision makers: Egypt is the craddle of civilisation. Egypt is the only country in the Middle East which can be craddle of democracy. Do not loose your weight!
Jana Hybaskova, Member of European Parliament

7-03-06 US Reiterates Concern About Ayman Nour Case in Egypt, By David Gollust, VOA, State Department:

The Bush administration Thursday reiterated its concern about the treatment of Egyptian democracy activist Ayman Nour amid calls for tougher U.S. action to protest his imprisonment. The State Department said Egyptian authorities should not ignore moves in Congress to link aid to Egypt to progress toward democracy.

The State Department says the case of Ayman Nour is at the forefront of the U.S. agenda with Egypt and will figure significantly in the future shape of the relationship.

But it says the administration is not prepared, at this point, to say there will be a review of the U.S. aid program to Egypt or other punitive steps in response to the prison term handed down against the former presidential candidate.

The comments follow editorial calls Thursday by two major U.S. newspapers for the White House to consider cuts in the U.S. aid program to Egypt because of its lack of progress on democracy as seen in the Nour case.

7-03-06 H. Con. Res. 82: Expressing the grave concern of Congress regarding the arrest of Ayman Nour

6-03-06 Egypt reformer feels iron hand of the law, by Christine Spolar, Chicago Tribune

(...) Ismail said the regime is trying to "terrify real, secular opposition" and her family.

"They don't want me to go to Washington. OK, I won't go to Washington anymore," Ismail said. "But I don't want to be jailed. I have two children. . . . I thought these people had enough of us already. But they haven't. If you are the opposition, they want to eat you. They don't have a ceiling. There is no common sense.

"I'm shocked, really, at what has happened to us."

27-02-2006 The Egyptian prosecution renewed the investigation in 21 lawsuits against Ayman Nur and his wife, Gameela Ismail.The fake charges range from curses and insults, physical assault, and challenges of Ayman Nur's identity and doctoral degree – to accusations of inciting against Egypt, defaming the (ruling) NDP party and disrespecting 'Egypt's national leaders'. The Police Secretary even filed a lawsuit accusing Gameela Ismail of hitting him.

25-02-2006 Lawyers of Dr. Nour have filed an appeal and demanded suspension of his sentence until the Appeals Court rules. Nour's lawyers said they filed their appeal Saturday on grounds that the court did not provide due process and that the trial was political not judicial. Anyway, on Wednesday, the Egyptian government brought new charges against jailed presidential candidate Ayman Nour, and even against Nour's wife for holding rallies about her husband's case.

23-02-2006 "Egyptian activists to Rice: Anger over US support for dictatorships", Al Quds Al Arabi

21-02-2006 Ayman Nour's Appeal

24-01-2006 Arab Media Reactions to the Imprisonment of Ayman Nour, Leader of Egypt's Al-Ghad Liberal Party

23-01-2006 "Stand with Ayman Nour", Washington Post

19-01-2006 Text Adopted by the European Parliament - Strasbourg

Middle East and Mashrek

61. Urges the Egyptian authorities not to undermine the prospects recently opened up with regard, in particular, to multi-candidate presidential elections, and to press ahead with democratic reforms; expresses its deep concern, in this regard, about the conviction of Ayman Nour, a prominent liberal opposition leader, who has been recently sentenced to five years' hard labour by an Egyptian court for supposedly forging signatures on petitions used to create his political party; regards this as a seriously retrograde step and calls on the Egyptian authorities to make every effort to ensure that this case is correctly dealt with.

OJ L 161, 26.6.1999, p. 1. Regulation as last amended by Regulation (EC) No 173/2005 (OJ L 29, 2.2.2005, p. 3)
OJ C 87 E, 7.4.2004, p. 515
Texts Adopted , P6_TA(2005)0430
Texts Adopted , P6_TA(2005)0412
OJ C 247 E, 6.10.2005, p. 155
OJ C 304 E, 1.12.2005, p. 398
OJ C 320 E, 15.12.2005, p. 25
OJ C 87 E, 7.4.2004, p. 506
OJ C 261 E, 30.10.2003, p. 142
Texts Adopted , P6_TA(2005)0150

19-01-2006 Text adopted by the European Parliament - Strasbourg

J. whereas human rights violations in Egypt have increased in the past months; whereas, for instance, the leader of the secular El Ghad party and former member of parliament Ayman Nour and other defendants were arrested after the last elections; whereas Ayman Nour has been sentenced to 5 years' imprisonment for allegedly falsifying some of the 50 signatures needed to register his party,

1. Condemns the violence of the Egyptian police that resulted in deaths and injuries, and insists that the situation could and should have been resolved peacefully;

2. Calls on the Egyptian authorities to ensure that police officers act in compliance with international standards and to put an end to the disproportionate use of force;

OJ C 140 E, 9.6.2005, p. 153

OJ C 272, 3.11.2005, p. 43

OJ L 304, 30.9.2004, p. 39

19-01-2006 Speech by Edward McMillan-Scott MEP (Yorkshire & Humber UK, Conservative/EOO-ED), European Parliament vice-president in a debate on the Middle East, Strasbourg

At the Egyptian elections which the EP rightly observed without being invited - I was chairman of that delegation too - we saw the intimidation of voters, especially those supporting Dr Ayman Nour, leader of the secular El Ghad party.

The EU rightly says his subsequent sentence at a show trial to five years' hard labour - by the same judge who put Saad Ibrahim in jail for three years - sends negative signals, but what is the negative response from Brussels?

The Middle East is a region of fundamental strategic importance and a source of danger. Indeed the London bombers last July came from my constituency in Yorkshire. But the key to stability is democracy.

As European Parliament vice-president, one of my responsibilities is the EuroMed Parliamentary Assembly. This is one of the best-functioning parts of the Barcelona Process.

What is needed however, is a dedicated EU programme for democracy in the Arab world and I look forward to hearing what plans the Commission has in this regard.

18-01-2006 "An American delegation in Cairo seeks the release of Ayman Nour", Al Quds Al Arabi.

18-01-2006 E-mail from Emma Bonino, member of the European Parliament.

Dear all,

It is quite possible that on Thursday the
European Parliament will approve these amendaments,
regarding Egypt and Ayman Nour case in the context of a
general resolution regarding human rights worldwide.

European Parliament - Joint Motion for a Resolution

Point K. Whereas human rights violations in Egypt have increased in the past months, inter alia the leader of the secular El Ghad party and former member of parliament, Ayman Nour, and other defendants were arrested after the last elections, and whereas Ayman Nour has been sentenced to 5 years of prison for allegedly falsifying some of the 50 signatures needed to register his party,

16. Welcomes and supports the worldwide calls to release Ayman Nour and strongly urges the Egyptian authorities to ensure that the Ayman Nour is well treated and not subject to torture or other ill treatment and to further ensure that he is given prompt, regular and unrestricted access to his lawyers, doctors (as he diabetic) and family.

17-01-2006 A First Answer to Egypt, Washington Post Editorial