A security crackdown that started Thursday evening has continued to target young Egyptian activists, journalists, and lawyers as the prosecution issued several arrest warrants ahead of expected protests on Monday.
The prosecution has issued arrest warrants for Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights (ECESR) lawyer Malek Adly, Yanair editor-in-chief Amr Badr, and the formerly detained journalist Mahmoud Al-Sakka, stated Adly in a Facebook post.
Several other journalists became aware they were among those wanted by police after security forces visited their residencies to detain them while they were away or after lawyers contacted the prosecution regarding those who were arrested since Thursday.
The prosecution has issued at least 47 arrest warrants according to the state-owned Al-Ahram newspaper. An unnamed source told the newspaper that Adly, Badr, and Al-Sakka have been accused of promoting false news.
Activists and opposition figures have roundly criticized the allegation that commenting on the sovereign transfer of Sanafir and Tiran islands and the loss of Egyptian land rights constitutes promotion of false information.
Meanwhile, a dozen of human rights lawyers, including Adly, have been following up on the dozens of citizens arrested without notice from cafes and private residencies since Thursday night.
Detainees face charges of inciting illegal protests, affiliation with a banned organisation, attempting to overthrow the regime, promoting false news and information aimed at disturbing public order, according to ECESR’s Sameh Samir,
Moreover, the changes include a claim that the defendants have resorted “to threatening to use violence against the president of the republic while he is acting within his constitutional authorities.”
Monday’s protests, which will coincide with Sinai Liberation Day, were called for by a number of secular opposition parties grouped under title of the Democratic Current, along with other civil forces who oppose the signing of a recent maritime borders’ demarcation agreement between Egypt and Saudi Arabia.