Saturday, October 18, 2008

Egypt's Ministry of the Interior Denies Prison Torture

From the Cairo Times:

A report issued by the Egyptian Association against Torture (EAAT) on 21 June provides evidence of abuse in prisons nationwide. The report followed an unprecedented letter from the Ministry of the Interior to members of the New York-based Human Rights Watch, denying accusations that 38 incidents of torture and seven deaths occurred at the hands of state security intelligence officers.

In the letter, issued 29 February, the ministry claimed that all seven deaths could be attributed to suicide or infighting among prisoners, and that 19 of the 38 alleged cases of torture “did not happen.” Investigations are pending in the remaining cases.

When EAAT announced its findings, the group accused the government of operating solely to defend its reputation abroad.

Okay, 19 of 38 "did not happen." So, what about the other 19 alleged cases? And isn't the first rule of damage control "plausible deniability"?

The denial by the Interior Ministry came despite a collection of photographs, interview transcripts and forensic reports, detailed in the report. The organization also said it felt threatened by the ministry’s letter, which referred to its activities as a “suspect organized campaign against the country in the field of human rights.”


Related --> And speaking of torture:

On 21 June, Cairo’s 11th FĂȘte de la Musique gathered singers, percussionists, a jazz band and a Frenchman with an upright bass for a night of music beside the Nile.

Mon Dieu.

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