A Muslim Brotherhood supporter died in Wadi Al-Natron prison purportedly due to medical neglect after almost two years of pre-trial detention.
The body of Essam Hamed was found in a Cairo morgue Monday, although the actual date of his death is not confirmed. According to his family, Hamed passed away due to medical neglect whilst in custody.
The 50-year-old was arrested during the violent dispersal of pro-Muslim Brotherhood sit-ins in August 2013 and has been detained pending investigations since then. Then, last month, the General Prosecution referred him, along with 378 defendants, to the criminal court in the case publicly known as the “Al-Nahda sit-in dispersal”.
The charges against the defendants included murder, demonstrating, resisting the police assigned to disperse the demonstration, and rioting.
Rights lawyer Ahmed Mefreh said that relatives of the deceased found the body in the morgue identified as “unknown”.
“Whether the death was inflicted by medical neglect or torture is yet to be identified,” he added.
A report compiled by El Nadeem Center for Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence, commemorating a year of President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s presidency, showed that 127 cases of death by or in the custody of security forces have occurred since the start of the year.
The report revealed 19 cases of death due to torture, and 11 due to medical neglect.
The state repeatedly denies any torture claims, often referring to “some violations” and “individual mistakes” as opposed to “systematic torture”.