On the occasion of the international day of the Disappeared The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights releases its report on “the enforced disappearance as a continuing violation against the human rights and freedoms”
September 1st, 2016 by Editor
On the occasion of the international day of the Disappeared
The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights releases its report on “the enforced disappearance as a continuing violation against the human rights and freedoms”
On Thursday 1/09/2016, EOHR issued its report on the enforced disappearances under the title “the enforced disappearance as a continuing violation against the human rights and freedoms” which marks the international day of disappeared ran parallel with the call of the coalition against enforced disappearance upon the member states to join the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.
In detail, the report is consisted from 3 main aspects. The first, the enforced disappearance in the legislations which considered the enforced disappearance as a clear violation of the Egyptian constitution which stated the protection of the right to life, liberty and security of person in the Articles no 54/55/99 and Article no.40/ The Code of Criminal Procedure.
Moreover, the first aspect focused on the existed legislative deficiencies in tackling this phenomenon which has been caused by the following reasons: 1- The lack of a legal provision clearly prohibiting or defining the enforced disappearance or punishing the perpetrators of this crime.2- the lack of severity of the applicable punishment on cases of unfairly arresting or detaining people by no right.3- unfulfilled role of the public prosecutions in oversight and inspection the activities in prisons to make sure that the process is observed in respect of persons who have actually been convicted and that no prisoners are being held illegally.
Consequently, the second aspect tackled the protection mechanisms of this crime in the international covenants such as the universal declaration for human rights and the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance that was ratified and issued pursuant to the United Nations general assembly 47/133 on 18/12/1992.the third aspect is addressing the Instances monitored and observed by EOHR during the last year (2015) and the first half of 2016 (till 31/08/2016).
Finally, the report developed in its conclusion a group of recommendations need to be put into action to face this crime:
1- Recommendations to the Legislative Authority:
- Enacting a new bill on prohibiting the enforced disappearance and imposes stiffer penalties for offenders who contributed or incited this crime.
- The inclusion of an additional rule in the penal code to increase the penalties for any public Service employee contributed or will contribute by any legal mean to the enforced disappearance or hiding any information that could hinder the investigations conducting by the administrative entities concerned with receiving the complaints on enforced disappearance.
- Extending the Parliament’s authority into the security services and establishing an internal committee consisted from the parliament members to observe the level of legal commitment of the security services personnel according to the Egyptian laws and constitution.
- Granting the entities and authorities concerned with the investigations on the cases of enforced disappearance the needed capabilities and authority to finish their investigations as soon as possible.
2- Recommendation to the attorney general:
- Listing the names of the detainees and the date of their detention along with their locations and the date of release-if Available- in a special record to be drafted in the technical office of the prisoners’ affairs provided that access to this information should be free and keeping copies of those records to be available upon submitting an official request without fees.
- Expeditious consideration of the cases and complaints of the enforced disappearance submitted to the attorney general and other prosecutions and the quick official written reply on those complaints to be provided including the investigations outcomes and to specify a period of time for this reply.
- Ensure the assignment of adequate number of prosecutors to move immediately to the place of the enforced detention in case of receiving an official report from the detainee’s family.
3- Recommendation to the Ministry of Interior:
- Transmission of the complaints on the enforced disappearances to the inspectorate. And the latter should be obliged to submit the investigations results to the detainees’ families for a period up to 30 days.
- The Ministry of interior should be obliged to send the detainee to the specialized session on investigating the grievances against the custody’s decision provided that the Ministry of interior should inform the location of the detainee and the date of release if Available according to the records of the Department of Prisons’ services and to be signed by the warden and the Commissioner of Prisons.
- The ministry is obliged to give access to the detainees’ families to the information of the location and the charge that resulted in the custody of their detainee.
- The referral of the police officers allegedly involved in arresting or hiding any person with no legal right to the disciplinary court regardless the investigative findings.
EOHR heavily stress on the following two recommendations:
- To allow human rights and civil society organizations to verify the condition of human rights in the prisons and to observe the process of law enforcement and the detainees’ complaints.
- no person may be arrested, detained in any district or police station without listing detainee’s name, address, place of detention and causes of detention and the name of the authorized police officer who arrested this detainee in the police station’s record and the warden shall be responsible for any case of enforced disappearance take place in his district and shall be responsible to provide the information mentioned-above such as the name of detainee and the place of detention and so on.
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