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Egypt rejects Amnesty International report on prisoner abuse as unfair and inaccurate - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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CAIRO, Egypt (AP) – Egypt rejected a report by human rights group Amnesty International that accused the country of systematic abuse against prisoners, calling it inaccurate and unfair.

Amnesty’s report Wednesday said 18,000 people were in Egyptian jails without trial, some for more than a decade. It said torture was pervasive in police stations and prisons. “The Egyptian government is offended by the latest report which included inaccurate and biased information about the state of human rights in Egypt,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement Thursday.

London-based Amnesty warned rights abuses were likely to worsen because of constitutional amendments approved last month that suspended civil rights in terror investigations and enabled the state to prosecute civilians in military courts.

The Foreign Ministry said Egypt has made “real and continuous achievements in the field of human rights,” citing the establishment of the National Council of Human Rights, a state-appointed body chaired by former U.N. Secretary-General Boutros Boutros Ghali.

The council has been accused by local rights groups of failing to challenge the state. But last month it raised eyebrows by accusing authorities of numerous violations in the referendum on the constitutional amendments.

The Amnesty report said it feared that a new anti-terrorism law, still being drafted, would “entrench patterns of abuse witnessed in the past 40 years.” The Foreign Ministry criticized Amnesty for giving “an advance opinion about a law that hasn’t been shaped yet.”

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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