Min. of Interior did not respond to NCHR request to visit Shamy
Reporter for Al-Jazeera Arabic Abdullah Al-shamy - YOUM7(Archive)

CAIRO: The Ministry of Interior did not respond to the National Council of Human Rights’s (NCHR) request to visit Al Jazeera detained journalist Abdullah Elshamy and detained political activist Mohamed Sultan, NCHR deputy head Abdel Gafour Shokr said Tuesday.

NCHR sent the request to the Ministry of Interior last Thursday, Shokr told Youm7 Tuesday and that they did not get any response from the ministry and they do not know the reason behind the delay.

According to a press statement issued on May 22, NCHR requested to visit Shamy and Sultan in response to public pressure after they received a letter from about 133 public figures demanding them to visit the detainees.

“The letter was sent by university professors, politicians, media people, artists, and writers demanding action to be taken regarding the detainees’ health conditions,” the statement added.

Attorney General Hisham Barakat approved Monday NCHR’s request to visit Tora Prison to follow up on Shamy and Sultan’s case.

Both detainees have been on hunger strike for months, protesting against their arrest and detention in August and against alleged abuse inside Tora Prison.

“After obtaining permission from the prosecution authorities, we are currently coordinating with the Ministry of Interior and awaiting their authorization to conduct the visit,” NCHR member George Ishaak added in a press statement Sunday.

Additional reporting by Ramy Saead.

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