Dostour Party member claims officers assaulted him in custody

Dostour Party member Hamdy Keshta was allegedly physically assaulted on Sunday while held in custody at the Bulaq Dakrour Police Station, the party said in a Facebook post published Monday.

Keshta, who is also a member of the banned April 6 Youth Movement, was arrested on April 25 in Nahia area in Giza while protesting against the sovereign transfer of the Tiran and Sanafir islands to Saudi Arabia.

Just one day before his co-defendants were released on bail, the prosecution levied new accusations against Keshta. They charged him with belonging to an illegal organization that aims to overthrow the government, and added him to a new case along with activists Zizo Abdo and Haytham Mohamadeen.

Keshta said he was then verbally and physically assaulted by multiple officers, according to a letter from prison that was published on the Freedom for the Brave Facebook page on Sunday.

In the letter, Keshta recounts that an officer asked him to kneel down in front of him as he was making the rounds to check the cells. When Keshta refused on the grounds that the order was illegal, the officer declared that there was no law in prison, and began beating him. The officer then handcuffed him to the cell door and left him there for half an hour, Keshta claims.

After he was un-cuffed and told he would be transported transferred from the police station to a prison, Keshta asked the station’s human rights officer to document the violations he endured. The human rights officer responded by launching a new physical assault, declaring that none of the prisoners were worth more than a bullet to end their lives, the letter continues.

Keshta ends his testimony by asserting that detainees repeatedly face far worse assaults than he did, pleading with human rights defenders on the outside to fight for the rights of prisoners.

He concludes, “After being stripped of our freedom, what do we have left if not our dignity, and some remains of our humanity that we are unable to defend inside prisons?”

The Dostour Party condemned the assault as an infringement on the values of the Constitution and the rule of law, and asserted that it would seek every possible legal measure to ensure that the perpetrators of the attack are prosecuted.


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