CAIRO: Activists posted pictures of Eslam al-Sayed on social websites and claimed that he died in El-Raml police station in Alexandria at the hands of the police on June 20. “My brother did not commit suicide; he was beaten to death by the police officers in El-Raml police station in Alexandria,” brother of the deceased Hany al-Sayed told Youm7 Friday.
Sayed, 23, dropped out of high school in his second year and worked as a blacksmith before entering the army to perform his military service. Central security forces claim Eslam was arrested while he was sitting with his friends in a cafe near his home on suspicion that he possessed a cigarette lighter that looked like a pistol.
His family received a call a day later from an eyewitness to tell them that Sayed fell to the ground and suffered excessive bleeding after he was assaulted by a policeman who hit him with a wooden stick while getting out of the prison vehicle, Sayed’s brother said. El-Raml police station claimed however that Sayed committed suicide by throwing himself from the top of the police station. His brother claimed that Sayed died of injuries sustained as a result of torture.
A video footage emerged that shows Sayed removing his handcuffs and throwing himself from the top of the police station, without showing what happened afterwards, Eslam’s brother said and believed Sayed was forced to jump and that investigations should reveal thetruth.
Lawyer at the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information Mohamed Ramadan accused police personnel of torturing Sayed to death and forcing him to throw himself from the top of the police station, Youm7 reported Friday.
“Eslam’s body showed clear signs of brutal torture, including bruises and two wounds in his thigh and leg,” Ramadan said. Public Prosecution is still investigating the death of a detained person in a police station in Alexandria.
Director of the Alexandria police station Nasser al-Abd denied claims that Sayed was tortured to death, and that the detainee died while he was trying to escape the police station.
Eslam’s mother called on President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi to impose a maximum penalty on those who killed her son. “I want my son’s right. Eslam’s right will not be lost in vain,” she told Veto gate news website.
Head of the Arab Penal Reform Organization Mohamed Zarea denounced the death of Sayed in Alexandria. He said the organization received several complaints and that there are several incidents of torture and prisoner abuse on a daily basis. He called on the prosecution to enforce its role and investigate into the incident, Sada El-Bald reported Thursday.
He stressed that the lack of punishment policy is the reason behind the increasing violations in Egypt’s prisons.
Activists said the death of Eslam resembles the story of Khaled Said, whose brutal death while in state custody in 2010 sparked the January 25 Revolution in 2011 that toppled former President Hosni Mubarak and his regime.
Said was beaten to death by policemen but they initially claimed he died after swallowing a marijuana cigarette and denied it was murder.
Sayed Belal was another victim of prison torture. He was arrested in Alexandria on Jan. 5, 2011 after the bombing of the Two Saints Church on New Year’s Eve 2011 that killed hundreds of Coptic Christians.
A day after his detention, Belal’s dead body was sent back to his family. A police officer from the dissolved State Security service Osama al-Keneisy was convicted of Belal’s death and sentenced to 15 years in jail on April 16, 2013. In March this year, the appeal filed by Keneisy was upheld, Al-Shorouq newspaper reported.