• Urgent Action


August 28, 2023

Anas al-Beltagy, who has been denied any contact with his family for six years, continues to be barred from prison visits, following his transfer from the Badr 1 Prison to the 10th of Ramadan prison in Sharqia governorate on June 8th. He has been arbitrarily detained for over nine years, despite being acquitted by courts in four separate trials. Concerns over his health mounted after he appeared weak during a detention renewal hearing held via videoconference on July 17th . He must be immediately and unconditionally released as his detention is solely due to his family links.


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    President Abdelfattah al-Sisi
    Office of the President, Al Ittihadia Palace
    Cairo, Arab Republic of Egypt Fax: +202 2391 1441
    Email: [email protected];
    Twitter: @AlsisiOfficial

    Ambassador Motaz Zahran
    Embassy of the Arab Republic of Egypt
    3521 International Ct NW, Washington DC 20008
    Phone: 202 895 5400 I Fax: 202 244 5131
    Email: [email protected] , [email protected]
    Twitter: @EgyptEmbassyUSA , @MotazZahran
    Facebook: @EgyptEmbassyUSA
    Salutation: Dear Ambassador


    Your Excellency,

    Anas al-Beltagy, the 30-year-old son of detained prominent Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed al-Beltagy, has been arbitrarily detained for over nine years solely because of his family affiliation. On 8 June, he was transferred from Badr 1 prison to the 10th of Ramadan prison. His family have no information about his detention and health conditions since they have been denied visits and other contact with him for over six years. He has also been denied deliveries of food and other essentials since 2021. In a detention renewal hearing held through videoconference on 17 July, he struggled to utter a few words to the judge, but was heard saying that he was “tired and deprived of all his legal rights’’.

    Despite courts acquitting Anas al-Beltagy of all charges in four separate cases and a judge’s decision to provisionally release him in a fifth case, on 20 March 2018 the Supreme State Security Prosecution (SSSP) ordered his detention pending investigations into a separate sixth case on similar spurious terrorism-related accusations. This well- documented pattern is referred to as “rotation” by Egyptian activists and lawyers and is intended to keep critics and opponents locked up indefinitely. The authorities have been holding detention renewal hearings remotely via a video link since 2022. Lawyers frequently complain of technical problems, including poor connectivity and their inability to hear defendants, which undermine their rights to meaningfully challenge the legality of their detention and the right to adequate defence.

    Since his arrest, Anas al-Beltagy has been subjected to torture and other ill-treatment, including through prolonged solitary confinement and deliberate denial of healthcare. He has been banned from any visits, phone calls or written correspondence with his family and lawyers since 2017. Anas al-Beltagy, who was a university student when arrested, has been unable to continue his studies in prison despite attempts to enrol in more than seven universities.

    In light of the above, I urge you to ensure that Anas al-Beltagy is immediately and unconditionally released and all charges against him are dropped as they are brought solely because of his family links and the exercise of his human rights. Pending his release, I call on you to ensure that he is held in conditions meeting international standards for the treatment of prisoners and granted regular access to his family, lawyers and adequate healthcare.

    Yours sincerely,