The head of the Lawyers’ Syndicate Sameh Ashour demanded on Sunday the minister of interior, the Alexandria security director, the head of detectives and the deputy police chief be fired and legally prosecuted.
The call was made during an emergency meeting at the Alexandria Court of Appeals in response to the attacks and detentions of lawyers on Friday at Al-Raml Police Station.
The syndicate announced the formation of a coalition of Alexandria lawyers as well as a legal committee to follow up on reports filed to the public prosecution by and against lawyers.
The syndicate also announced they would maintain the ban on allowing police officers access into the Lawyers’ Syndicate. It also prohibited advocating or defending any policemen, vowing to punish any lawyer who violates this decision.
Mahienour El-Massry, an Alexandrian lawyer who was among those attacked and detained on Friday, said that the measures taken by the syndicate will not be effective unless they’re followed by all lawyers nationwide.
“This is a late reaction,” El-Massry said, commenting on the syndicate’s decisions. “This isn’t the first time lawyers are subjected to violations by policemen.”
El-Massry referred to a trial on 20 January when police officers were accused of killing protesters during the 25 January Revolution. “The lawyers were also beaten by policemen in court then and there was no strong reaction,” El-Massry said.
“The good thing about these decisions is that they are giving a warning to police officers,” El-Massry said. “It’s also good that they don’t only concern lawyers, but people in general.”
She stated that such decisions by the Lawyers’ Syndicate cannot reform the Ministry of Interior on their own. “As long as policemen get away with such attacks, the rivalry between them and the citizens is going to increase, and so will their confidence in impunity.”
The syndicate announced their assembly is currently in permanent session. It requested that the Alexandria Lawyers’ Syndicate and other sub-syndicates nationwide call for an emergency general assembly.
Ashour also called for a one-day strike on 10 April to protest against the insult of lawyers in Alexandria, reported state-owned news agency MENA.
The lawyers and activists arrived at the police station to voice their solidarity with three political activists captured by Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) members and handed over to the police on Friday. They were then allegedly beaten by policemen. Five lawyers were also detained and referred to investigation.