Alexandrian political activist Hassan Mustafa‘s hunger strike entered its fourth day as he awaits trial in his cell in Borg Al-Arab Prison.
Mustafa was arrested on 21 January, accused of physically attacking a prosecutor. He announced his hunger strike, claiming that his incarceration is illegal.
“He should have been released,” said Hamdy Khalaf, Mustafa’s lawyer. Mustafa is detained pending his trial schedule for 26 February.
Khalaf said no evidence could be held against Mustafa, saying the prosecutor’s medical report doesn’t incriminate him. Khalaf added that five lawyers who witnessed the brawl between Mustafa and the prosecutor stated that Mustafa never attacked him.
Mustafa allegedly slapped a prosecutor after going with three human rights lawyers and three activists to the Al-Mansheya Court Complex on 21 January to check on detained protesters arrested after clashes that followed the trial of police officers accused of killing protesters on 25 January. He is also facing charges of smuggling detainees and inciting violence in Al-Mansheya.
This is the second time Mustafa went on hunger strike in prison. The first hunger strike was upon his arrest in January, when he was placed in solitary confinement.
Mustafa is a well-known activist in Alexandria. He was first arrested on 6 April 2008, in a demonstration supporting the Al-Mahalla workers’ strike.
Additional reporting by Sara Abou Bakr