Egyptians are voting; Where is Amr Tharwat?
Shura legislative council elections began today throughout Egypt, with the elections already marred by violence, a crackdown on the Muslim Brothers, and the disappearance of Amr Tharwat and others.
It's an ugly scene. The first priority should be to find where is Amr Tharwat and the others arrested with him. To repeat, the four arrested and their ages are Adellatif Mohamed Saied, aged 40; Ahmed Dahmash, 30; Abdelhamed Abdelrahman, 26, and Amr Tharwat, aged 25. No legal charges have been brought against any of them. Prison authorities continue to deny that they are being held. I talked with colleagues in Egypt today who informed me that every day they try a new prison and they are always turned away. Very simply, for more than a week now, the four have been disappeared.
The four are members of a Islamist religious group set up by Tharwat's uncle. The group's aim is to counter the influence of violent Islamists. Group members say that although their group is peaceful, they have faced both threats from armed Islamist groups and the government. Like much of civil society, the group is caught in the middle of two bodies each eager to wipe out any vital center.
Please contact the Egyptian embassy about the case and ask that the four either be released or publicly charged with a recognizably criminal charge. You can call the embassy at (202)895-5400.