CAIRO: The family of imprisoned Egyptian-American duel citizen Mohamed Sultan—who has been on hunger strike for over 250 days in Egyptian prison—has called on the U.S to intercede to pressure Egypt to release him, according to news reports.
“This has nothing to do with using foreign influence in internal affairs. It’s [Sultan’s] right and the duty of his country to defend him,” Arab Penal Reform Organization head Mohamed Zarea told The Cairo Post Thursday.
Demands to release Sultan come amid other calls by many activists to set free other detainees and activists in jail.
Human Rights Watch said in its daily briefing Wednesday that, “Egyptian authorities continue to crack down on basic freedoms, including ‘mass death sentences and the widespread jailing of political opponents.’”
Following his arrest in August 2013, Sultan started his hunger strike on Jan. 26, 2014 to protest his imprisonment. Henceforth, Sultan’s health is reported to have deteriorated seriously.
Sultan faces charges of participating in the Rabaa al-Adaweya sit-in and publishing false information meant to disrupt public stability.
It was reported security forces detained him at his house searching for his father Salah Sultan, who is believed to have affiliations with the banned Muslim Brotherhood.
According to the website of the U.K.-based Human Rights Monitor (HRM), a prison doctor who examined Sultan said on Sept. 23 that he “had less than a month to live and his transfer to hearings greatly affects his health.”
Sultan started to have internal bleeding, added HRM. The human rights organization explained that he already suffers from abnormal blood clots, and to avoid it, he takes a medication that has resulted in excess bleeding.
Social media users have been using hashtags to disseminate information about detained activists and updates on their health conditions due to a perceived lack of information provided by prison authorities.
For Sultan, a number of social media users tweeted hashtags like “Life for Mohamed Sultan” and “Free Sultan.”
Political activist Alaa Abd El Fattah, who was recently released on bail, said on his Facebook account Wednesday, “The only way to save Sultan’s life is to release him. His imprisonment is killing him, his judge is killing him and everyone in power is participating in his murder.”