CAIRO: Former Ghad party leader Ayman Nour denied claims made by a dermatologist that burn injuries he received on Friday evening were caused by a hairdryer, rather than an unknown assailant.
Doctor Nadia Gheith is quoted in Thursday’s edition of Al-Masry Al-Youm as saying that when Nour went to the hospital on Friday with an individual who introduced himself as Nour’s personal hairdresser, the Ghad party leader informed Gheith that his injuries were caused while his hair was being blow-dried.
On his website aymannour.net, Nour writes that the allegations are “pure fantasy.
He says that none of the doctors he saw at the hospital were old enough to be professors (Gheith describes herself as a dermatology professor in the Al-Masry Al-Youm article).
He adds that he in fact left the hospital before completing treatment after waiting over half an hour for a qualified doctor to arrive at the hospital to treat him.
In press statements given since Friday’s incident, Nour has said that he was attacked by two unknown assailants on a motorbike while sitting in his car outside his home on Friday night.
He says that one of the men set fire to the spray of an aerosol can and directed it at Nour’s face, causing first-degree burns to his scalp and forehead.
Nour told the Christian Science Monitor earlier this week that the attack was politically motivated, and linked it to his recent decision to stand in the 2011 elections.
Daily News Egypt was unable to reach Gheith herself, but was told by a member of staff at the El-Resala hospital in Mohandiseen, Cairo, where Gheith is employed, that the doctor’s statements are “true and confirmed that Nour had gone to the hospital on Friday.
He refused to give further details, however, saying that this would breach hospital policy.
While Nour confirms that at the time of the incident he was accompanied by a hairdresser “from a salon in Zamalek known as Reda Rizk, he says “his presence has nothing to do with the false claims made by Gheith.
Nour says that if the statements in Al-Masry Al-Youm do turn out to have been made up by the doctor concerned he will “press legal charges under Article 222 of the penal code, under which it is a crime for a doctor to give false information about an illness or disability.
Other Ghad party members also strongly denied the allegations.
Nour’s lawyer, Osama Abdel Meneim told Daily News Egypt that Gheith’s allegations are “a fabrication.
“Nour doesn’t know who Gheith is and has never met her – she was not the one who examined him, Abdel Meneim said.
“He saw a different doctor. While he doesn’t remember her name, he thinks that her first name was something like Safaa. Gheith’s claims are a fabrication and have no basis in the truth. There is a burn to Nour’s forehead which could not have been caused by a hairdryer.
Abdel Meneim also cast doubt on Al-Masry Al-Youm’s claims that Gheith’s statements were made before the Prosecutor General’s office and said that this would be established later on Thursday evening after talking to the Prosecutor General’s office.
He added that the forensic medical report concerning Nour’s injuries will be issued in a week.
Ghad party member Wael Nawara also cast doubt on the allegations made in Al-Masry Al-Youm.
“It could be that either [Gheith] has been instructed to say this by the regime or that Ayman Nour did not tell her the [real] cause of the accident, but I don’t want to accuse Al-Masry Al-Youm or anyone else – I do not imagine that Al-Masry Al-Youm would start fabricating stories of that kind.