| 18 May 2021, Tuesday | النسخة العربية

Egypt releases Solafa Magdy and husband from prison

Egyptian journalists Solafa Magdy and her husband Hossam Al-Sayyad have been released from jail and have been reunited with their families.

In a photo widely circulating online, the couple can be seen smiling with their son Khaled.

On 26 November 2019Solafa, her husband and another friend were arrested in a café in Cairo and accused of spreading false news and joining a banned group around the time of the September protests called for by Egyptian whistleblower  Mohammed Ali.

Unfortunately, their friend Mohammed Salah, who was arrested with them, has not yet been released.

Egypt is one of the top three jailers of journalists worldwide alongside Turkey and China and has repeatedly cracked down on reporters and stamped out freedom of speech.

Solafa was awarded the 2020 Courage in Journalism Award and specialises in minority and women’s rights, refugees and sexual harassment in Egypt.

In February, Solafa’s lawyer submitted a complaint to the Egyptian attorney general to say that his client had repeatedly been physically and sexually assaulted whilst in prison

During one attack she was hit until she suffered heavy vaginal bleeding, stripped of her clothes and dragged along the floor.

Amnesty International launched a campaign   calling for Solafa’s release and urged activists to send appeals to the Egyptian attorney general demanding he releases her immediately and unconditionally.

Authorities also released journalist and opposition figure Khaled Dawood  yesterday after he was detained for more than 20 months over his criticism of the government.

There are some 60,000 political prisoners in Egypt who are kept in inhuman conditions, in overcrowded cells, with little access to sunlight.

Political prisoners are routinely tortured and denied medical care as a punitive measure for speaking out against the regime.