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Rami Kamil


Detained Coptic activist passes threshold for maximum period of pre-trial detention

26 Nov 2021

Egyptian Coptic activist Rami Kamil completed two years in pre-trial detention on 23 November, exceeding the two-year maximum limit permitted under article 143 of the Egyptian Penal Code.

Mr Kamil is a prominent human rights activist and a founding member and coordinator of the Maspero Youth Union, a Coptic human rights organisation that emerged following the Maspero massacre of October 2011, in which over 20 Coptic protesters were killed when the military attacked a peaceful civil rights protest. He was arrested in November 2019, and has had his detention extended on multiple occasions over the past two years.

Mr Kamil is currently facing terrorism charges, but it is widely believed he was targeted because of his human rights work documenting violations of the right to freedom of religion or belief.

According to Article 143 of Egypt's Code of Criminal Procedure, the maximum period of pre-trial detention must not exceed six months for defendants accused of crimes punishable by up to three years in prison, 18 months for crimes punishable by up to 15 years in prison and two years for crimes meriting death or life imprisonment.

CSW’s Founder President Mervyn Thomas said: “It a serious injustice that Mr Kamil has now been detained for over two years without facing trial. He is innocent of the excessive charges against him, and the fact that he has been held for longer than the maximum permissible period of pre-trial detention in Egypt indicates a lack of respect for due process and rule of law in relation to his case. We continue to call for his immediate and unconditional release, and urge Egypt to create a safe enabling environment for the peaceful defence of fundamental human rights.”



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