6 April Movement call arrest of policemen in Khalid Saeed case victory

The 6 April Youth movement issued a statement Thursday calling the Alexandria District Attorney’s decision to jail two Alexandria police officers accused of using excessive force on Khalid Saeed a victory.

In their statement, the youth of 6 April said that the decision is a score for the movements that organized demonstrations and internet publicity campaigns demanding the truth relating to Saeed’s death on 6 June.

Although police maintain that Saeed died from chocking on a bag of marijuana during his arrest, several eyewitnesses say they saw police drag him from an Internet café and beat him to death in the street. The case has become a thrust for opposition calls for an end to torture and police brutality in Egypt.

The movement, whose leaders have been subject to repeated arrests and alleged abuse by police since its founding in April 2008, called the government’s decision to summon and inform European Union (EU) ambassadors of its rejection of their “interference” in Saeed’s case “a rash step”. They argued that the EU scrutiny was more of an effort to defend human rights than an attempt to interfere in Egyptian affairs. The ambassadors, representing the EU’s diplomatic envoys to Cairo, issued a joint statement on Monday expressing their concern over the circumstances surrounding Saeed’s death and discrepancies between state investigation results and witness accounts of the incident.

Similarly, MP Hamdy Hassan, who represents the Muslim Brotherhood stated his rejection of the Egyptian Foreign Ministry’s accusations that the EU ambassadors had unduly interfered in Egyptian affairs. According to Hassan, the Foreign Ministry’s actions make it appear as if it encourages the extrajudicial beatings and killings of Egyptian citizens. He added that he had expected the ministry to show the ambassadors the legal procedures that were being taken to investigate the circumstances of Saeed’s death.

From his side, Opposition MP and Karama Party Founder Hamdeen Sabahi stated that the decision to jail the two policemen, who work at the Sidi Gaber station in Alexandria, was just the beginning in the process of achieving justice and of the end for those who had tortured and killed Saeed. In a statement to Al-Masry Al-Youm, Sabahi called for the arrest of the chief of police in charge of the Sidi Gaber station, claiming that he had incited his policemen to kill Saeed.

6 April Movement General Coordinator Ahmad Maher said that his movement’s and other opposition factions’ strong stand on Saeed’s case demonstrated that they would have the last word on the matter.

Translated from the Arabic Edition. 

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