A 16-year-old boy has successfully taken and passed his exams, despite having been imprisoned for over a year and four months.
Sohaib Emad, from Mansoura in the Daqahleya governorate, was arrested from his house in February 2014 on charges of “forming a gang, resisting police with weapons and targeting police officers and university professors”.
A campaign on Facebook to raise the profile of Emad’s case announced that the exams he took during mid-May came back as successful, despite the young student having been behind bars for three school terms.
While Emad became interested in politics and protesting following the 2011 uprising, his family strong deny the charges and believe he has become swept up in an unjust case.
In September of last year, Emad had surgery for a knee that was injured while in detention, Ahram Online reported, and now remains in jail, with the detention period prior to his case hearing having been renewed multiple times.
In March, Human Rights Watch called out the “arbitrary detention, unfair trials, and physical abuse” of children by the Egyptian state. The prominent human rights group referenced the case of a nine-year-old boy from Fayoum, reported by Daily News Egypt. The boy faces military trial alongside his father on charges of attacking security forces and burning public facilities.
Egyptian lawyers told HRW that while in detention, children may face assault by guards and other inmates as they are commonly held in adult detention facilities, despite it being unconstitutional, as well as in makeshift locations.
In December, news broke of a detention camp in the town of Banha holding an estimated 600 minors. Though denied by the Ministry of the Interior, Daily News Egypt spoke to lawyers working with families of the children detained there, who corroborated the story.
During the last year and a half, at least 1,000 minors have been detained in Egypt’s prisons, according to human rights group ‘Free the Children’. The group claims that minors as young as 11 are often arrested randomly during clashes between protesters and police.