African commission considers complaint by victims of Cabinet clashes: EIPR
Side of Cabinet clashes - YOUM7/Ahmed Ismail

CAIRO: The African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights accepted to consider a complaint by the families of protesters killed and injured during the Cabinet clashes in Dec. 2011, according to Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights’ (EIPR) statement Thursday.

In the statement, it said that this is the first case dealing with victims killed in events related to the January 25 Revolution to be considered before a nondomestic judiciary.

The incident of the Cabinet clashes dates back to Dec. 16, 2011after the Supreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF) dispersed a peaceful sit-in. The protesters were against the appointment of Kamal al-Ganzouri as Prime Minister and demonstrated outside the Cabinet headquarters. The clashes left 18 dead and more than 900 injured.

The victims’ families complained that they tried all domestic judiciary procedures for more than two years but their lawyers failed to attain any information from the investigations’ judges about the procedures of the case, according to the statement.

“In their submission, the complainants called upon the African Commission to rule that the Egyptian Government violated several of the human rights guaranteed by the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights,” read the statement.

The Charter was ratified by the Egyptian Government in 1984 and published in the official newspaper in 1992.

The complainants requested that “the Egyptian Government fulfill its duty to promptly, adequately, and impartially investigate the incidents related to the Cabinet Offices clashes and to prosecute and punish the perpetrators.”

There are four organizations representing the complainants before the African Commission; the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, Warakom Bel Taqrir, the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, and the National Community for Human Rights and Law.

The statement also mentioned that the case was not the first Egyptian case to be considered before the African Commission. “In March 2013, the African Commission ruled on one such case, finding that the Egyptian Government violated the African Charter in relation to the sexual harassment of female journalists and activists who were attacked by security forces on May 25, 2005.” The incident was then known as Black Wednesday.

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