Negad El Borai
Negad El Borai

Hesham Mohamed Zaki Barakat

Public Prosecutor

Office of the Public Prosecutor

Supreme Court

Cairo, Arab Republic of Egypt

Fax: +202 2 577 4716+202 2 575 7165

Email:[email protected][email protected]

Your Excellency,

I am?William Nicholas Gomes, Human rights defender and Freelance journalist.

?

I would like to draw your attention to the following case.

On 21 May 2015, human rights defender Mr Negad El Borai was interrogated by an investigative judge in North Giza Court in relation to the drafting of a new anti-torture law.

Negad El Borai is a well-known figure in Egypt’s human rights movement. He is a lawyer and the head of the legal unit at United Group. He is also a columnist for Al Shorouk newspaper and has advocated for freedom of expression, assembly and association. In January 2014, Negad El Borai resigned from Egypt?s National Council for Human Rights (NCHR), protesting its politicised and inconsistent position on human rights abuses in Egypt. The human rights defender was the founder and president of Group for Democratic Development and the Secretary General of the Egyptian Organisation for Human Rights.

The interrogation of Negad El Borai was in connection with a workshop convened on 11 March 2015 by United Group to discuss its draft law for the prevention of torture with other experts. The draft law was prepared by a committee of lawyers, academics and judges, including judges Hisham Raouf, president of the Cairo Court of Appeal, and Assem Abdel-Gabbar, vice president of the Court of Cassation. A complaint was reportedly filed by the Supreme Judicial Council against the two judges prior to Negad El Borai’s interrogation. The draft law aims to bring Egypt’s domestic law in line with the United Nations Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. The investigative judge summoned Negad El Borai for another interrogation session on 26 May 2015.

I believe that the interrogation of Negad El Borai and the complaint against judges Hisham Raouf and Assem Abdel-Gabbar are directly linked to their work in the defence of human rights and particularly their activities for the prevention of torture in Egypt.

I urge the authorities in Egypt to:

1. Refrain from bringing any proceedings against Negad El Borai, as well as judges Hisham Raouf and Assem Abdel-Gabbar as it is believed that the measures taken against them have been solely on account of their legitimate and peaceful work in the defence of human rights;

2. Guarantee in all circumstances that all human rights defenders in Egypt are able to carry out their legitimate human rights activities without fear of reprisals and free of all restrictions.

Sincerely,

William Nicholas Gomes

Human Rights Defender & ?Freelance Journalist

[email protected]

Email: [email protected]

www.facebook.com/williamnicholasgomes

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