The Al-Sabbagh killing case, as it happened

Amira El-Fekki
3 Min Read
The family of killed activist Shaimaa Al-Sabbagh felt compassion for the family of convicted 24-year-old police officer Yassin Salah. (Photo by Ahmed Abdeen)
Photo by Ahmed Abdeen
Photo by Ahmed Abdeen


24/1 – Al-Sabbagh shot dead – party members arrested

25/1 – Forensic Medicine Authority (FMA) establishes initial statement that cause of death was birdshot in the back

26/1 – Former Minister of Interior Mohamed Ibrahim denies police involvement in Al-Sabbagh’s killing at press conference

27/1 – SPAP claims Ministry of Interior prevented the holding of Al-Sabbagh’s funeral in a famous mosque in Cairo

29/1 – Accusations and arrests of eyewitnesses, including detention of SPAP’s Vice-President Zohdy El-Shamy for one night

1/2 – Politicians and activists widely denounce police brutality

12/2 – Prosecutor-General Hisham Barakat orders media gag on case

22/2 – President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi names Al-Sabbagh’s case in a public speech, says “Every official will be held accountable for their shortcomings”

13/3 – SPAP headquarters in Alexandria raided, two members arrested then released

17/3 – Barakat refers police officer from Central Security Forces (CSF) to criminal court over alleged killing

18/3 – Two CSF officers accused of covering up for their partner by denying they have witnessed the shooting

23/3 – Police arrests Ashraf El-Shimy, party member in Alexandria

24/3 – FMA spokesperson Hisham Abdul Hamid dismissed over TV interview on Al-Sabbagh’s case, in which he said she died because she was “too thin” to resist birdshots

29/3 – Up to the current moment, lawyers are being denied a copy of the investigations’ report


The defence team consists of 53 lawyers, led by SPAP’s lawyer Ali Soliman and Head of the Lawyers’ Syndicate Sameh Ashour


  • 11 Lawyers from SPAP headed by Ali Soliman, leader of defence team
  • 16 Rights’ lawyers from several civic organisations
  • 26 Independent rights’ lawyers
  • Prominent human rights’ defenders include Khaled Ali, Mahienour El-Massry, Ragya Omran (NCHR), Tarek El-Awady, Tarek Nagida, Nasser Amin and Tamer Gomaa (Al-Dostour Party)
  • Young lawyers familiar with protest law cases


Supporting NGOs

  1. 11 organisations and associations are involved in the case with 16 lawyers


  • Nazra for Feminist Studies
  • Egyptian Commissioner for Human Rights
  • Association for Freedom of Thought and Expression (AFTE)
  • Al-Haqaneya Law Center
  • Hisham Mubarak Law Center
  • Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights (ECESR)
  • Nedal Center for Rights and Freedoms
  • National Community for Human Rights and Law
  • Cairo Center for Development (CCD)
  • Middle East Human Rights Centre
  • National Council for Human Rights (NCHR)


  1. 58 local NGOS signed a joint statement supporting the defendants on Saturday 28 March


  1. 44 politicians, lawyers and activists signed the statement


Police suspects in case:

–          1 CSF police officer, accused of manslaughter and intended injury of protesters

–          1 CSF officer and 1 conscript accused of covering up for their colleague and hiding evidence


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Journalist in DNE's politics section, focusing on human rights, laws and legislations, press freedom, among other local political issues.
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