Detained sisters Hend and Rasha Munir Abdul Wahab Ali Nasr began their partial hunger strike on August 8 making November 15th, their 100th day on strike. The detainees' hunger strike comes as objection to their life sentence served August 6.
Rasha and Hend who have remained in detention for over 15 months were arrested at a checkpoint at Hadaek Gardens in Cairo during the second Ramses incident on August 16, 2013, following the Rabaa dispersal. She has been accused in case number 468/12018 of 2013 of possessing 6 firearms and pamphlets despite lacking evidence.
Rasha is a 31 year old Ain Shams resident in Cairo. She is a mother of 2 children, Basmallah 8 and Malak 6. Her husband's unfortunate death came as he waited in line to visit his detained wife in the heat on April 5th
The detainee was verbally abused and viciously beaten resulting in broken teeth at the Hadaek Quba Police Station where she spent one month there. She was continually threatened with rape if she failed to confess to the charges leveled against her. Both Rasha and her sister were tortured daily. She was transferred to the Qanater Prison and again brutally beaten and tortured at the hands of criminals detained, officials and troops. Her cell was infested with bugs, worms and small snakes in addition to unclean drinking water. The only water available had tiny parasites.
According to the detainees' mother both women's health have deteriorated. Rasha has suffered from heart valve disease since her childhood and since her continued torture in detention her condition has gotten worse.
Hend's plight is no better. The 34 year old woman has one son and two daughters, the eldest being in fourth grade. Hend was arrested with her sister and was accused of possessing arms and pamphlets again with no evidence. During her torture Hend plead to take her sister's session of torture since she feared her sister's life would be in danger because of her heart condition. Her detention has led to problems in her kidney causing her much pain.
The detention has had a negative effect on Hend's children. Her 8 year old son Yusuf now suffers from enuresis and her 4 year old daughter continues to ask about her mother and her whereabouts. Her eldest has dropped out of school since her mother's arrest.
It is worth noting that lawyers have filed an appeal following the verdict and to date have received no response; again a direct breach to human civil and political rights. The convention enshrines all persons shall be equal before the courts and tribunals. In the determination of any criminal charge against him, or of his rights and obligations in a suit at law, everyone shall be entitled to a fair and public hearing by a competent, independent and impartial tribunal established by law. The press and the public may be excluded from all or part of a trial for reasons of morals, public order public or national security in a democratic society, or when the interest of the private lives of the parties so requires, or to the extent strictly necessary in the opinion of the court in special circumstances where publicity would prejudice the interests of justice; but any judgment rendered in a criminal case or in a suit at law shall be made public except where the interest of juvenile persons otherwise requires or the proceedings concern matrimonial disputes or the guardianship of children.
Human Rights Monitor condemns the ill treatment faced by the women stressing the Egyptian authorities completely violated the International convention articles 7, 9 and 10 for Human rights. Article 7 stipulates that all are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of the declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination. Article 9 reads, no one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile and article 10 cites, everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him.
HRM calls on the UN to immediately intervene and pressure Egyptian authorities to release the detainees especially following the deteriorating status of their physical and emotional health in detention due to ill-treatment, abuse and insults.
It also voices its concern following their hunger strike and calls for a retrial in a fair court particularly since there is a lack of evidence if any, in their case.
HRM also calls on the Egyptian authorities to respect international conventions regarding civil and human rights and to allow all citizens the right to express their views without repression, and to allow free expression to all citizens alike.