Activist Alaa Abdel Fatah begins hunger strike
Alaa Abdel Fattah - YOUM7/Kareem Abdel Kareem

CAIRO: Activist Alaa Abdel Fattah began a hunger strike Monday evening after his father Ahmed Seif El-Islam entered an intensive care unit Sunday, according to a Tuesday statement by Abdel Fattah’s family on Facebook.
“I will not play the role they [security forces] have chosen for me,” Abdel Fattah.

Abdel Fatah visited his father in the intensive care unit after he became unconscious Sunday at dawn.
Abdel Fattah’s family visited him Thursday in Tora prison. At the time, his father’s condition was fine, but his family could not inform him of his father’s deteriorating health.

Abdel Fattah went to the hospital Sunday happily holding flowers and looking forward to speaking with his father, he said. He was surprised when he found his father unconscious in an intensive care unit, according to his family’s statement.

“Seeing his father unconscious was a turning point for Abdel Fattah, and at the end of the visit, he decided he will not cooperate with this ‘unjust absurd situation’ even if it costs him his life,” according to the statement.

“Abdel Fattah informed us of his decision, and it was so hard to bear, but we understood his feeling of oppression eventually and his need involve sincerity in the absurd and tragic situation he lives. Abdel Fattah’s decision matches the sensitivity of the situation,” his family’s statement said.

“Abdel Fattah is in prison for the third time since the January 25 Revolution. This cost him much, he was kept away from his family, his first child was born while he was in jail, his programming company was negatively affected due to his absence and his younger sister Sanaa was imprisoned following a march in solidarity with him beside Ithadeya palace.”

Abdel Fattah was allowed to visit his father only when he was unconscious and was not allowed to visit when his father had heart surgery.

At the end of the statement the activist’s family said that they hold the regime the responsible for depriving Seif El-Islam and Laila Soueif, Abdel Fattah’s mother, from being beside them in one of the toughest moments in their lives. They added they hold the regime responsible for Abdel Fattah’s safety after he began the hunger strike.

Soueif told Al-Masry Al-Youm Tuesday that his family will not start a parallel hunger strike, because they are busy with following his father’s health condition.

Abdel Fattah was sentenced June 9 to 15 years in jail over conducting illegal protests outside the Shura Council in November 2013, Youm7 reported.

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