Egyptian legal system more responsive to torture than our own?

Australian citizen Mamdouh Habib was tortured by American and Egyptian officials post 9/11 and was smeared and shunned by the corporate press for years. He demands justice and deserves it. He talked to me about these issues in February, including the involvement of Egypt’s new Vice-President, Omar Sulaiman.

A few days ago I was contacted by an Egyptian human rights worker and lawyer looking to contact Habib directly to being proceedings in the post-Mubarak country. Things are moving quickly (and of course, not a peep about prosecuting Sulaiman in the US or Australia, as he was their nice, torturing bitch):

Former Guantanamo Bay detainee Mamdouh Habib is suing Egypt’s new Vice-President, Omar Sulaiman, over his incommunicado detention and torture in Cairo in 2001, in what is shaping as an important human rights test case in the post-Mubarak era in Egypt.

Cairo lawyers acting for Mr Habib have notified the Egyptian Attorney-General they are launching proceedings against General Sulaiman, who heads Egyptian intelligence, along with the country’s former interior minister, Habib al-Adly, and Jamal Mubarak, the son and lieutenant of former president Hosni Mubarak, who resigned amid anti-regime protests in February.

A summary filed by the Cairo lawyers says Mr Habib was detained without charge for six months and subjected to “the most horrible torture methods” including electric shock, cigarette burns, attack by dogs, sexual violation and water torture.

The documents allege some of Mr Habib’s interrogations were conducted personally by General Sulaiman, who has been Egypt’s intelligence chief since 1993, and that torture occurred in the presence of Jamal Mubarak, who was a senior official in the ousted regime.

The lawyers have petitioned the Egyptian Attorney-General to have the country’s embassy in Canberra arrange for Mr Habib to travel to Cairo to give evidence.

Mr Habib does not have a current Australian passport as he is still deemed by the security agency ASIO to be a security risk. He told The Australian he had asked the federal government to issue temporary travel documents to enable him to travel to Egypt to testify, but was awaiting an answer.

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

Site by Common