Alaa Abdel-Fattah..An Egyptian leftist activist who threatened to commit suicide and his imprisonment sparked a crisis between Egypt, Germany and America

Blogger and programmer Alaa Abdel-Fattah is one of three Egyptian activists who were recently sentenced to final prison terms for “spreading false news”, which sparked widespread international criticism.

The 40-year-old Alaa belongs to a long-standing left-wing family in which the political and human rights struggle has been passed down from generation to generation.

personal life

November 18, 1981: Alaa Ahmed Seif al-Islam Abdel Fattah Hamad, better known as Alaa Abdel Fattah, was born in a family apartment in the Dokki neighborhood in central Cairo.

He is the son of the late Egyptian lawyer and jurist Ahmed Seif Al-Islam and the former executive director of the Hisham Mubarak Law Center, and Dr. Laila Soueif, a professor of mathematics at the Faculty of Science at Cairo University, both of whom have been politically and legally active since the seventies in Egypt.

– Alaa is married to blogger Manal Bahy El-Din Hassan and had his first child while he was in Tora prison, detained and accused in connection with the Maspero events.

He named his first child Khaled, after Khaled Said, the famous Egyptian figure who had a major role in the outbreak of the January 25, 2011 revolution.

Abdel-Fattah started his career with his wife as a programmer in the field of information technology.

He also worked on developing Arabic versions of important computer programs.

March 20, 2004: Together with his wife, he launched a blog under the title “A Bucket Full of Information” or known as “Manal and Alaa’s Information Bucket”, to cover the news without relying on specialized journalists and experts in the field of journalism, which constitutes support for the local popular press, which won an award Reporters Without Borders.

first arrest

May 7, 2006: During a peaceful protest for the independence of the Egyptian judiciary, Alaa was arrested along with 10 other bloggers and activists.

A blog called “Free Alaa” was established, dedicated to calling for his release.

June 20, 2006: After serving 45 days in prison, he was released and acquitted.

2008: Alaa moved with his wife to live in South Africa.

25 January reveloution

– With the outbreak of the revolution of January 25, 2011, Alaa was present in Egypt and appeared as one of the symbols of the revolution’s youth.

October 30, 2011: The Military Prosecution in Nasr City decided to imprison Alaa for 15 days, pending investigation, against the background of accusing him of incitement and participation in assaulting members of the armed forces, destroying equipment belonging to the armed forces, demonstrating and gathering, and disturbing security and public peace in the “Maspero events.” .

Alaa refused to recognize the legality of his military trial as a civilian, and refused to answer questions from the Military Prosecution, then was later transferred to the Supreme State Security Prosecution, to give birth to his first son, “Khaled” while he was still imprisoned pending investigation, after the State Security Prosecution rejected his petition to release him to attend a birth daughter.

December 25, 2011: The investigative judge decided to release Alaa.

– He announced – during the first presidential elections after the revolution – his support for the candidate Mohamed Morsi, who belongs to the Muslim Brotherhood, in the face of Lieutenant-General Ahmed Shafiq, the last prime minister during the Mubarak era, but he opposed Morsi on a number of issues and also joined demonstrations calling for the fall of his regime.

– After the army overthrew and ousted Morsi, Alaa Abdel-Fattah expressed his opposition to interim President Adly Mansour, who was appointed by Defense Minister Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.

March 25, 2013: The Public Prosecution ordered his arrest, bringing him, and banning him from traveling on charges of “inciting violence.”

March 26, 2013: He was released after refusing to make a statement.

– November 28, 2013: Alaa was arrested on charges of inciting protests against the new constitution in front of the Shura Council.

The policemen broke into Alaa’s house, broke the door, and confiscated the family’s computers and mobile phones.

– When Alaa asked about the warrant for his arrest, the police physically assaulted him and his wife.

2014: Alaa and his sister Sana were arrested while they were participating in a demonstration against the Egyptian regime.

February 23, 2015: An Egyptian court sentenced Alaa to 5 years in prison on charges of demonstrating without a permit, while his sister Sana was sentenced to one and a half years in prison on charges of spreading false information, misusing social media, and insulting a police officer while performing his duties.

March 2019: Alaa was released on condition that he be placed on probation, that is, he spends 12 hours free and another 12 sleeps in the police station every day for another 5 years.

September 29, 2019: Alaa was arrested again amid a wide campaign of arrests and accused of spreading false news and joining a terrorist group.

He was transferred to Tora Prison 2, which is a notorious prison in Egypt, also known as Al-Aqrab Prison 2.

Prison officers threatened and insulted Alaa Abdel-Fattah, blindfolded him and stripped him of his clothes, and beat and kicked him several times, according to an Amnesty International report.

April 2020: Alaa went on a hunger strike to protest the length of his pretrial detention and the denial of visits.

November 19, 2020: Cairo Criminal Court adds Alaa and other activists to the lists of terrorist entities for a period of 5 years.

threatened to commit suicide

– September 13, 2021: Alaa met his defense lawyer and human rights lawyer Khaled Ali in a session to renew his detention and conveyed his complaint about the poor conditions inside the prison and depriving him of all his rights, threatening to commit suicide if his demands were not met.

– September 15, 2021: Khaled Ali confirmed that his office had submitted “a warning by a report to the assistant minister of the interior, head of the Prisons Authority, to transfer Alaa Abdel-Fattah from Tora 2 high-security prison to another prison, due to the existence of a judicial litigation and previous reports from Alaa against the prison administration.” .

October 2021: A collection of his writings, interviews and publications are translated and published in an English book entitled “You Have Not Yet Been Defeated” by Fitzcarraldo in London.

International claims raise a crisis with Egypt

December 17, 2021: The German Foreign Ministry wrote on its Twitter account that the upcoming verdict against Alaa and his two colleagues, human rights lawyer Mohamed El-Baqer and journalist Mohamed Ibrahim, known as “Oxygen”, will “serve as a sign of the direction in which the human rights situation in Egypt is evolving.”

– The statement referred to the German government’s expectations of releasing the detainees, adding that “lawyers may not be punished for practicing their professional activity. From the point of view of the Federal Government, freedom of expression is the basis of social peace.”

– The Egyptian Foreign Ministry announced in a statement its rejection of the German statements and said that it “considers this method, which involves unacceptable transgressions, as a blatant and unjustified interference in the Egyptian internal affairs, and is confiscated on a judicial track without objective evidence or support.”

Human rights experts at the United Nations called for the release of the three detained activists.

– December 20, 2021: An Egyptian court sentenced Abdel Fattah to 5 years in prison and Baqer and Oxygen 4 years in prison for “spreading false news.”

US State Department spokesman Ned Price expressed his country’s “disappointment” with the prison sentences issued by the Egyptian judiciary against the three activists.

The Egyptian Foreign Ministry rejected Washington’s criticism, stressing in a statement that “it is not at all appropriate to comment in any way on, or address, rulings issued by the judiciary in implementation of laws and based on irrefutable and conclusive evidence and evidence within the framework of a fair, impartial and independent judicial process.”

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