By Heba Fahmy
CAIRO: Security forces assaulted three members of the campaign supporting former IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei in Alexandria on Monday while they were collecting signatures for his seven demands for change, a campaign official said.
The supporters were taken by plain-clothed security forces into a microbus and detained for a couple of hours then released in separate areas in Alexandria, according to the campaign’s media office.
One of the supporters, Momen Dahab, was reportedly severely beaten by security forces in a deserted area beside Al-Manara cemetery in Alexandria for taking pictures of the incident.
“One of the security forces beat me with a belt while the other security force members beat me unconscious with their hands,” Dahab told Daily News Egypt.
“I had bruises in my right eye, my nose, my jaw and my abdomen,” Dahab added.
According to Dahab, security forces insulted him and said, “We will make you forget all about change.”
Dahab was left in the deserted area after his camera, cell phone, wallet and even shoes were confiscated by security forces. “After I gained consciousness, I walked to the nearest phone booth to get help,” Dahab said.
He was taken to the hospital, which refused to issue a medical report regarding his condition. “I waited from 8 am until 8 pm on Tuesday so I could get a medical report on my condition,” Dahab said.
He then filed a report to the prosecution office along with a complaint against the head of the investigations department of Bab Sharqi police station in Alexandria, Ahmed Abul Izz, for assaulting Dahab.
“They opened an investigation of the incident and we (the campaign) are waiting for any developments,” Dahab said.
The campaign titled “Together for change” was launched to garner support for ElBaradei’s seven demands for political reform by collecting one million signatures.
These demands include judicial supervision over elections, easing restrictions on independent candidates and putting an end to the emergency law.
The campaign’s Facebook page has 260,000 members and over 118,000 have signed ElBaradei’s demands for change through the website and campaigners. Last September, the Muslim Brotherhood said it had collected over 700,000 signatures for the same petition for change.