CAIRO: Activist Medea Benjamin, who was arrested and allegedly had her arm broken by Egyptian police according to her Twitter account, has now been released, and is safely out of the country, according the U.S. Embassy Spokesperson Moufid Deak.
Benjamin had been travelling to Gaza to attend a conference on women’s rights, when she was stopped and held in a jail cell in the airport, her tweets said.
Further, a report said that anonymous sources told Youm7 that an American woman was prevented from entering Egypt, and was ordered to be deported based on instructions from the ruling authorities.
It is unclear whether the report is in fact referring to Benjamin, as it makes no mention of names. The report however stated that the woman arrived on a plane from Istanbul.
ِِِAnother security source stated that she was prevented from entry because she lacked the necessary paperwork. However, U.S. citizens are generally granted visa upon arrival for a U.S. $15 fee.
Further, Bloomberg reported that an unnamed police officer stated that she had not been arrested, but rather was being held at the airport as the Gaza crossing is closed.
Deak also told The Cairo Post that the embassy is aware of the case, and “offered her the consular services required,” but could not reveal further information due to not having signed a Privacy Waiver Act with her.
Benjamin is the founder of the U.S.-based peace group named Code Pink, and has been outspoken about the siege on Gaza, having previously entered the region, and organized humanitarian aid for Palestinian refugees.