Egyptian-Palestinian political activist Ramy Shaath, detained in Egypt for more than two years, has been released, a judicial source said on Monday. The 48-year-old man, a figure of the Egyptian revolution of 2011 and the coordinator in Egypt of the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement (BDS, advocating the boycott of Israel in the fight against the occupation of the Palestinian Territories) was detained since July 2019 for wanting to foment “unrest against the state”.
His French wife, Céline Lebrun, had been deported to Paris at the time of her arrest. “Rami Shaath was released by the general prosecutor’s office on Monday evening,” said the judicial source, without giving further details. “I heard about the decision but as far as I know it hasn’t come out yet. We’ll issue a statement when he’s out and on the plane, ”his wife said.
More than 60,000 prisoners of conscience imprisoned in Egypt
In December, five human rights organizations questioned French President Emmanuel Macron on the fate of this activist, son of Palestinian political leader Nabil Shaath. A year earlier, during a visit to Paris by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi on December 7, 2020, Emmanuel Macron had claimed to have spoken with him about “individual cases”, including that of Ramy Shaath. Ramy Shaath’s situation “is closely monitored and is regularly discussed, including at the highest level,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Anne-Claire Legendre said last month.
Another Egyptian human rights activist, researcher Patrick Zaki, was released in December after 22 months in detention but still faces up to five years in prison for “false information” over an article denouncing discrimination against Christians . Egypt has more than 60,000 prisoners of conscience, according to NGOs. The United States believes that the country violates human rights in all areas and has consequently frozen 10% of its aid.