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Amnesty to send protest letters to Egypt

Korean office urges authorities to respect demonstrators' rights

Amnesty to send protest letters to Egypt
Egyptian police and protestors clash in Cairo (Photo courtesy of Gwangju Human Rights and Peace Foundation)
Stephen Hong, Seoul

February 8, 2011

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Amnesty International in Korea says it has launched an online protest letter to urge Egyptian authorities to uphold human rights as demonstrators continue their struggle for democratic reform. Egyptians protesting for the end of President Hosni Mubarak’s rule since January 25 are at risk from abuse and arbitrary arrest, the human rights watchdog said in a statement. “Over 1,000 protestors have been detained by Egyptian security forces and many of them were beaten,” the statement said. “Their mobile phones were confiscated and those injured were denied adequate medical care and immediate access to a lawyer,” it added. In the letter, Amnesty’s Korea office urges Egyptian authorities to protect demonstrators’ rights, investigate killings and abuses by the security forces, and to try those detained in fair proceedings or release them. It also asked the authorities to rein in their forces and not to resort to the use of fire arms. Park Sung-ho, Amnesty’s Korean office coordinator, told today they are hoping as many people as possible will sign the petition to express their solidarity with Egyptians facing suppression. For this purpose, Amnesty has published contact information for Interior Minister Mahmoud Wagdy and Prosecutor General Abd El-Megeed on its website. Many Koreans believe the situation in Egypt is similar to Korea 30 years ago when they themselves were subjected to bloody suppression by a military dictatorship in their struggle to win democracy. Citing unofficial figures, United Nations estimates at least 300 Egyptians have died since the protests began. Related UCA News reports Catholic group supports Egypt protests KO13167.1640
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