The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) released a press statement calling on the Egyptian authorities to immediately release detained rights lawyer Malek Adly and to drop all charges against him.
ICJ has expressed its concern that the motive of these actions taken against Adly may be one of vengeance for being a lawyer and a human rights activist. They also considered the arrest as an attempt to frighten other activists as their work is already not encouraged by the Egyptian authorities.
“Adly was charged despite his peaceful expression of his opinions,” the statement read.
Arresting Adly for peacefully expressing his opinion is yet another attempt by the Egyptian authorities to “muzzle” lawyers who are the last chance for victims of human rights violations in Egypt, director of the ICJ Middle East and North Africa programme Said Benarbia said.
Restriction of rights and freedoms in Egypt has extended to lawyers who play an active role in stop this form of oppression, Benarbia said.
According to the director, over the past three years the ICJ has documented several cases of human rights violations against lawyers in Egypt. These cases include lawyers Imam Afifi and Karim Hamdi who were allegedly tortured and died of their wounds in police custody.
International standards aim to protect lawyers while doing their jobs and without being terrorised or harassed. The Egyptian Constitution guarantees the independence of the profession in order to protect lawyers’ right to defence.
Benarbia concluded by calling on Egyptian authorities to follow the Constitution and put an end to their attacks and violations against lawyers.
Adly was arrested on 5 May and was charged of attempting to overthrow the regime and spreading false rumours, among other charges.