CAIRO: Detained blogger Maikel Nabil ended Sunday a 130-day hunger strike, as Prosecutor General Abdel Meguid Mahmoud ordered his transfer to Tora Prison Hospital and to investigate alleged violations against him inside El-Marg Prison.
Nabil, who is serving a two-year prison sentence by a military trial on charges of insulting the military institution and spreading false information, said he suffered inhumane treatment inside prison.
"On Saturday, an inmate beat my brother, and when he tried to file a complaint against this inmate, he was threatened by police officers inside the prison of framing him in a fabricated a contempt for religion case against him," Mark Nabil, Maikel’s brother told Daily News Egypt Monday.
The inmate is a former police officer imprisoned on charges of murder and according to Maikel receives special treatment.
"I visited Maikel the same day and when I was leaving I was searched by the prison’s administration in a very humiliating way," Mark said, adding that he immediately went to rights lawyer Amir Salem who filed a complaint at the Prosecutor General ‘s office urging the prosecution to investigate violations against Maikel.
"Salem, along with the prosecutor of El-Khanka and a doctor, went to the prison, listened to Maikel’s testimony regarding the violations and the fabricated charges, and then he was immediately sent to Tora Prison Hospital," Mark recounted.
Salem managed to convince Maikel to end his hunger strike.
"I still could not visit Maikel, but he cannot eat normally since he has been on a hunger strike for 130 days, so he needs to eat gradually," Mark said.
Maikel was arrested in March by military police and was tried by a military court after writing a blog post titled "The army and the people are not one hand," recounting what he called was “the army’s conspiracy against the revolution.”
A military court sentenced him to three years in prison, but he was retried the sentence was shortened to two years.
He had undergone a hunger strike in protest against referring him to a military trial as a civilian. He rejected all interrogations by the military court and told his lawyers not to attend the court sessions.
The military court appointed a lawyer for Maikel who requested his transfer to a mental hospital for a full examination to check whether he is responsible for his actions.
The hospital then released a report saying that Maikel’s mental state is normal.
Maikel’s lawyer Negad El-Boraie said earlier in a press conference that the ruling military council is completely disregarding the humanitarian aspect of the case, as Maikel’s father sent an official apology to SCAF urging them to release his son.
"Words and opinions still remain to be more powerful than the power of live bullets," El-Boraie said.
Member of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) Major General Mokhtar El-Molla criticized in an interview with eight foreign journalists the media’s focus on the cases of detained bloggers like Alaa Abdel Fattah and Maikel.
"No one has been brought in front of court based on their opinion or activity on Facebook, Twitter or any other media," the Guardian quoted El-Molla as saying.
"The media has ignored the [charges of] crimes against [Abd El Fattah] and concentrated instead on him being a blogger and activist," he added.
"Nabil and Abdel Fattah are Egyptians and we are very keen to protect all Egyptians. But we are talking about one citizen out of 85 million," he said.