January 31, 2023

The circle of relatives of jailed Egyptian-British rights activist Alaa Abdel-Fattah, who started refusing all meals and water initially of the COP27 local weather convention remaining weekend, mentioned on Monday they gained a letter from him proving he was once nonetheless alive.

“From nowadays I am consuming water once more so you’ll prevent being worried till you notice me your self,” mentioned the letter to Abdel-Fattah’s mom, dated Saturday. His sister, Sanaa Seif, showed the letter was once within the activist’s handwriting.

“We are relieved to peer evidence of lifestyles. I will be able to sleep nowadays with out nightmares. However we would like this to be over. Our circle of relatives merits a wreck. We wish to be reunited in peace,” Seif mentioned.

UNFCCC COP27 Climate Conference: Day Seven
Protesters, together with Sanaa Seif (second from L), reveal over local weather justice, loss and injury, fossil fuels, human rights, exploitation by means of wealthy international locations of deficient international locations and different local weather comparable problems all over the UNFCCC COP27 local weather convention on November 12, 2022 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

SeanGallup/Getty Photographs


Already on a restricted starvation strike for greater than 200 days — consuming handiest 100 energy consistent with day — Abdel-Fattah stopped consuming water on November 6 when COP27 were given underway. His circle of relatives mentioned he sought after to finish his time in jail, both by means of pressuring the global group to safe his freedom or by means of finishing his lifestyles.

Regardless of his being a British citizen, Abdel-Fattah’s attorneys and U.Okay. govt representatives have now not been accepted to discuss with him in jail, prompting fears that he was once being force-fed, or that he may just also have died in custody. His circle of relatives had now not gained their standard correspondence from him for the reason that get started of COP27. His attorney was once once more denied get right of entry to to Abdel-Fattah on Monday, the circle of relatives mentioned.

“As of late is the primary day I have been in a position to take a right kind breath in 8 days,” Seif mentioned according to the letter. “Since COP27 started and Alaa went on water strike we have been asking each day for an evidence of lifestyles. Now we all know he is alive. I would know his handwriting any place. But if I learn it over and over again it leaves me with extra questions. Why have they been refusing his attorney get right of entry to to him, even with a allow? Why did they hang this letter again from us for 2 days? Is it simply cruelty to punish the circle of relatives for talking up?”

Abdel-Fattah’s different sister, Mona Seif, mentioned she believed the federal government was once proceeding to limit get right of entry to to her brother to cover the consequences of his starvation strike, which they have got been denying.

“They just may not permit any person else to peer him and notice for themselves the transparent affect of a protracted starvation strike on Alaa’s frame,” Mona Seif tweeted.

Closing week, Sanaa Seif, who could also be an activist and has been jailed more than one occasions in Egypt, broke her self-imposed exile in London to fly to the Egyptian lodge the town of Sharm el-Sheikh, simply as COP27, the arena’s largest annual local weather summit, was once starting there.

UNFCCC COP27 Climate Conference: Day Five
Sanaa Seif attends a protest accumulating to call for freedom for imprisoned human rights and environmental activists around the globe all over the UNFCCC COP27 local weather convention on November 10, 2022 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

Getty Photographs


As the arena’s consideration excited by her house nation, with tens of 1000’s of global attendees accumulating — from heads of state and govt ministers to multinational industry leaders and local weather activists — she believed it was once the most efficient, and most likely remaining, probability to save lots of her brother.

However even with evidence that he was once nonetheless alive as of Saturday, the COP27 summit has now handed its midway mark, and the circle of relatives fears time is operating out.

“Alaa continues to be on starvation strike, the U.Okay. embassy has nonetheless failed to succeed in consular get right of entry to, he is nonetheless arbitrarily detained for ever and ever,” Seif mentioned in a commentary on Monday. “Even with such a lot global consideration on Alaa the Egyptian government can nonetheless simply disappear him. He must be on a aircraft to London and handiest then do we permit ourselves to really feel true aid.”

President Biden held a short lived bilateral assembly with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi on Friday all over his three-hour prevent to handle local weather summit attendees. The White Space mentioned the president had steered his team of workers to “paintings with the Egyptians on quite a few explicit circumstances, certainly one of them being that case,” however it might now not verify that Mr. Biden had raised Abdel-Fattah’s state of affairs with el-Sisi at the back of closed doorways.

Egypt’s chief introduced later, in entrance of cameras, he had introduced a “nationwide technique for human rights,” an initiative for “nationwide discussion” and a committee for “presidential amnesty” in a possible try to defuse assaults from human rights teams, which estimate that some 60,000 political prisoners are recently detained in Egypt.

U.Okay. Top Minister Rishi Sunak and German Chancellor Olaf Sholz mentioned they’d raised Abdel-Fattah’s case with the Egyptian management, however in addition they accomplished no breakthroughs.

“I do know that politicians are environment friendly after they wish to be,” Seif instructed CBS Information in an interview in Sharm el-Sheik remaining week. “They understand how to do this, and when they would like stuff from each and every different, they understand how to get it completed. So are we able to ship this something? Are we able to?”

As her interview with CBS Information endured at the grounds of the COP27 convention, a number of other folks – some with out the specified local weather summit badges – approached and started recording video of the dialog.

The website of COP27 is on de-facto, however brief, U.N. grounds. Protests have successfully been unlawful in Egypt since 2013, and Seif fears she could also be arrested as soon as the summit concludes.

“I am being intimidated. I am being watched. I am being stressed. It is a calculated possibility. I am scared. I am not announcing I am not scared,” Seif instructed CBS Information. “I felt like my brother was once going to die, and I needed to take calculated possibility.”

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