Amnesty International’s leadership called for a “full, impartial, and effective investigation into the shocking loss of life that has taken place in Egypt over the last week,” in a statement issued on Monday.
The organisation issued the statement during a meeting between members of Amnesty International in Berlin for the group’s bi-annual International Council Meeting, saying Egypt’s interim government had “already stained its human rights record” by using lethal weapons to disperse sit-ins supporting the ousted president Mohamed Morsi at Rabaa Al-Adaweya and Nahda Square and by violating promises of safe exit for protesters.
“The response of the international community has been weak and ineffective, even as everyone leaps to condemn the horrific lost of life,” said Secretary General of Amnesty International Salil Shetty, who went on to say that those governments that act indecisively risk losing credibility.
“Even if violence was employed by some of the pro-Morsi protesters, it could never justify such a disproportionate response,” she added, also stressing the lack of distinction by security forces between those using and inciting violence and those peacefully protesting. “Nothing less than a comprehensive investigation can ensure justice for the victims and accountability for the perpetrators,” said Director of Amnesty International in Germany Selman Caliskan.
Shetty also called on the Egyptian authorities to act immediately to “prevent further loss of life, while bringing security and public order back to the streets.”
The Ministry of Health on Friday announced a death toll of 638 as a result of the dispersals of the sit-ins on Wednesday. However the Egyptian Centre of Economic and Social Rights said the dispersals and related violence led to at least 1,295 deaths, including 938 civilians on Wednesday, 52 security personnel, and 28 bodies found underneath the platform of the pro-Morsi sit-in at Rabaa Al-Adaweya.
Amnesty International previously called for measures to be taken against those involved in the “excessive use of force” during the dispersals, calling for a full and impartial investigations following the violent actions on Wednesday.
The organisation previously released testimonies from anti-Morsi protesters claiming to have been “captured, beaten, subjected to electric shocks or stabbed,” by pro-Morsi demonstrators.