By Rawan Ezzat
Dozens of protesters in front of the High Court building staged a sit-in over the disappearance of journalist and activist Ahmed Douma, who was ordered to be released on bail on Wednesday morning. Protesters demanded the immediate release of Ahmed Douma.
“The unexplained disappearance of [Douma] has caused us to stage a sit-in to pressure his release,” Mohammed Douma, the activist’s brother, said.
The EGP 5,000 bail was paid on Tuesday at Tanta Prison, and Douma’s appeal against a verdict which sentenced him to six months is prison is set for 26 October.
Douma was arrested on 30 April for insulting President Mohamed Morsi, after he called him a “killer” and “criminal”. Although he was ordered to be released on Tuesday, a Cairo court ordered another trial over charges Douma incited violence against the Muslim Brotherhood in Moqattam last March.
“We paid the bail in Tanta, but they refused to release Douma, saying he must be released from Tora Prison,” Mohamed said. At Tora, the detained activist’s family were told he had been sent to Cairo General Prison to be freed from there.
The Cairo Security Directorate denied knowledge of Douma’s whereabouts and claimed he had not arrived at the prison. However, Ali Suleiman, Douma’s lawyer, said during a telephone interview on Al-Hayat TV channel on Tuesday that Douma is being held in Tora and that this is illegal.
Suleiman also claimed during the interview that TV preacher Safwat Hegazy said Ahmed Douma will “never see the streets for insulting his leaders”.