Egypt to Retry ‘Cairo 52’—Al-Fatiha Calls Move Shameful
June 25, 2002
Founder & Director
US Cell: 202-271-0067
As the Egyptian government announced plans to retry 50 of the ‘Cairo 52’
this week, Al-Fatiha called on the Egyptian government to end its shameful
acts of discrimination against men in Egypt perceived to be gay.
The ‘Cairo 52’ were arrested and tried last year where 21 men were
convicted and sentenced to 3 to 5 years in jail with hard labor. 29 men were
acquitted and later released. Under the current ruling all the men, both
guilty and acquitted will be retried, except for 2 men who are considered to
be the ‘ring leaders.’
Al-Fatiha calls on the Egyptian government to release all those imprisoned
because of their presumed sexual orientation and to stop the crackdown of gay
men in Egypt. In recent weeks another round of arrests have occurred with
police entrapping men via the internet.
Gay.com, an international web portal for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and
transgender people has hosted an Egyptian chat room. It is not clear whether
Gay.com will shut down the Egyptian chat room or not. GayEgypt.com, a web site
dedicated to gay Egyptians has called on Gay.com to keep the chat room open as
an expression of freedom of speech.
On May 19, a young man aged 19 was arrested for allegedly arranging a
meeting with someone from the internet. On June 8, he was sentenced to 3 years
Al-Fatiha also called on the Egyptian government today to abide by all
international human rights laws that it is a party to. Egyptian officials have
repeatedly said that they are not violating international human rights laws
and they are not entrapping gay men.
"The Egyptian government and Egyptian police must treat all of its
citizens with human dignity and respect," said Faisal Alam, founder &
director of Al-Fatiha. He added by saying that, "Al-Fatiha will continue
to monitor the situation in Egypt and urge Egypt to guarantee the human rights
for sexual minorities living in Egypt."
Al-Fatiha is an international organization dedicated to Muslims who are
lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, those questioning their sexual
orientation or gender identity.
PO Box 33532
Washington, DC 20033
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