CAIRO: Health Ministry forces went Tuesday to execute a February decision to close the Nadeem Center for Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture.
However, the closure has not been implemented, according to founder Dr. Magda Adly, who told The Cairo Post that the forces have left the headquarters.
Dr. Aida Seif el-Dawla, one of four founders of the center posted on her Facebook account that forces from Free Treatment department and others from the Ministry of Health headed to the headquarters “insisting on the closure without showing the original copy of the decision.”
Seif el-Dawla added that she and Adly refused to leave the premises, then one of the forces called the Interior Ministry and they all left. She previously stated the decision is “political,” and vowing that reports citing torture will continue until “the state stops torture.”
The center announced during a news conference that it had appealed the decision.
The Ministry of Health issued a warning to close the anti-torture center accusing it of “changing its name from a clinic to a center,” and the second by “changing its activity from medical to human rights.,” which according to the ministry, requires withdrawing licenses from the medical facility.
In previous statements to The Cairo Post, Dr. Suzan Fayad, another founder of the center, said that the center had obtained a license under its name in 1993.
Fayad added that when the center required licenses from the Health Ministry, “it rejected to license us under the same title, because the ministry does not have such category in its licensing system,” and instead “told us to practice our activities as normal but under the title ‘clinic’.”
“Since then, we have had two different titles, and for 22 years of operation, we have not been blamed for it,” Fayad said, adding that she does not see a difference in the activities practiced under both titles.
In January, the center reported 137 deaths of prisoners inside places of detention during 2015, 39 of which were allegedly due to torture.