News / Middle East

    Report: Crimes Against Humanity Likely in Egypt Protest Deaths

    FIILE - Egyptian security forces clash with supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi at Nasr City district in Cairo, Nov. 22, 2013.
    FIILE - Egyptian security forces clash with supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi at Nasr City district in Cairo, Nov. 22, 2013.
    VOA News

    Human Rights Watch (HRW) said Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi should be investigated for possible human rights violations in connection with the killing of hundreds of protesters last year in Cairo.

    In a new report Tuesday, the group outlines the conclusions of a yearlong investigation into six weeks of violent crackdowns on protesters who were rallying against the ouster of former leader Mohamed Morsi.

    More than 1,000 people were killed in what HRW called an "unprecedented scale" of protester deaths in Egypt as the country's police and security forces "systematically and intentionally used excessive force."

    The report said Sissi, who was serving as Egypt's army chief, should be investigated along with Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim and Medhat Menshawy, who led forces that carried out a massively deadly operation to clear out a protest camp.

    Warned protesters

    The government had warned for days it would move against the camp around the Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque, which officials said was disruptive and could incite terrorism. 

    But the report said warnings about when the action would take place were not sufficient.  

    HRW said there was some evidence of protesters attacking security forces at the site, but that the response "amounted to collective punishment of the overwhelming majority of peaceful protesters." 

    More than 800 people were killed.

    The group said the pattern of responses to the pro-Morsi protests between July 5 and August 17 last year amounted to "grossly disproportionate and premeditated lethal attacks," and that the killings likely amounted to crimes against humanity.

    The report said Egypt has not carried out any credible judicial investigations or prosecutions and urged the government to probe those responsible for any rights violations. 

    It also recommended security forces stop "unlawful excessive use of force," and for officials to cooperate with Egypt's own fact-finding commission related to the mass killings.

    UN investigation

    Human Rights Watch also urged the United Nations to establish a commission of inquiry to investigate all human rights violations from the mass killings of protesters in Egypt.

    Sissi led the ouster of Morsi, who was Egypt's first democratically elected president but lasted only a year in office before protesters held mass rallies accusing him of trying to monopolize power and failing to fix the country's economy. 

    The crackdown against Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood also included arresting many of the group's top leaders.

    Ahead of the report's release, two Human Rights Watch officials said Egypt barred them from entering the country.

    Executive director Kenneth Roth and Middle East director Sarah Leah Whitson said Monday that authorities held them overnight at the Cairo airport before denying them entry for "security reasons."

    State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said the United States was disappointed the two individuals were not allowed to enter Egypt and that the U.S. encourages the Egyptian government to conduct a transparent investigation of the protester deaths.

    You May Like

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Before burial at overflowing cemeteries, unidentified dead being swapped for DNA, in case some day relatives come to learn their fate

    Russian Opposition Leader Sues Putin for Conflict of Interest

    Alexei Navalny tells VOA in exclusive interview why transfer of $2 billion from country’s wealth fund to company with ties to President Putin’s son-in-law triggered lawsuit

    How Diversity Has Changed America

    Over the past four decades, the level of diversity in the United States has increased most in these four states

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Mahfuze from: Egypt
    August 12, 2014 9:23 AM
    Hey UN, will you stop this bull shit please "CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY..". whose humanity are we talking about..?? these are Islamic terrorist bent on destroying civilization..!!! look at the cultural destruction, mass rape, mass mutilation, mass executions and crucifixions that they have caused... in Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Syria, Libya, Egypt, Gaza... the UN is essentially protecting these Islamic scumbags... and allowing them to continue perpetrating these horrific atrocities...!!! what the UN is doing is a CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY..!!! listen, I am Christian, i lived all my life in Egypt, let me tell you, if it weren't for Al Sisi, today there will remain one single Christian alive in Egypt.
    And now, Turkey is becoming a Muslim Brotherhood State..!! A NATO member with European aspirations that officially supports the same depravity of Hamas ISIL Al Qaeda... THESE are enemies of humanity... fools !!!
    In Response

    by: Waha from: Egypt
    August 12, 2014 3:07 PM
    Thank you Mahfuze. finally someone says it like it is. In Gaza, if you are a woman and you laugh in public you will be arrested by Hamas and repeatedly gang raped until you agree to become a suicide bomber to save the honor of your family. That is Hamas. The Muslim Brotherhood instituted the same laws in Egypt. and now Turkey is a Hamas Muslim Brotherhood State... watch and see.
    In Response

    by: ali bab from: new york
    August 12, 2014 1:23 PM
    excellent comment and well written
    In Response

    by: Ali baba from: new york
    August 12, 2014 10:36 AM
    Muslim brotherhood has a lot of money and hire lawyers to convince Un or human right organization about producing that report. the case is crystal clear. that Muslim brotherhood is a terrorist organization and it has billion from Arab country and Egyptian whom live in Us and Europe. and how long west is being fool about them

    by: Ali baba from: new york
    August 12, 2014 9:18 AM
    There is no crime against Humanity in Egypt. It seems to me that human right organization Has not look at the picture as a whole or Muslim brotherhood lobby want destroy Egyptian Gov. and public opinion. After the removal of morsi.. ,Muslim brotherhood refuse to accept people decision and they pay for poor people to say and protest hoping that their protest will remove the Gov. and restore the control of Muslim brotherhood. They stay in a place called Rabbia el Addawi. The Egyptian Gov. . asked them to go home because It is illegal protest. they dropped leaflet from air plane. they ask them to leave and give them free transportation. when they are In Rabbia El addawia they store weapon and home made bomb.

    The Egyptian Gov. has no alternative is use force to disperse them . When the operation to disperse them started ,they use microphone and asked them to leave the place peacefully but they refuse and attack the police. the police has the right to defend themselves. Remember that Muslim brotherhood is a terrorist organization and use violent as ISIS and Osama Bin laden Group . We hear in the news That ISIS is killing minority and commit mass murder. Muslim brotherhood is acting in the same manner. they burnt 80 churches. they kidnapped Christian girls and sold them as a sex slave in Saudi . We should not listen to terrorist organization propaganda. They are liar and they had several chances to leave peacefully but they refuse to understand that violent should not a mean to achieve its goal

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Filli
    X
    Hamada Elsaram
    February 11, 2016 8:01 PM
    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Russia's Catholics, Orthodox Hopeful on Historic Pope-Patriarch Meeting

    Russia's Catholic minority has welcomed an historic first meeting Friday in Cuba between the Pope and the Patriarch of Russia's dominant Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church split with Rome in 1054 and analysts say politics, both church and state, have been driving the relationship in the centuries since. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video US Co-ed Selective Service Plan Stirs Controversy

    Young women may soon be required to register with the U.S. Selective Service System, the U.S. government agency charged with implementing a draft in a national emergency. Top Army and Marine Corps commanders told the Senate Armed Services Committee recently that women should register, and a bill has been introduced in Congress requiring eligible women to sign up for the military draft. The issue is stirring some controversy, as VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports from New York.
    Video

    Video Lessons Learned From Ebola Might Help Fight Zika

    Now that the Ebola epidemic has ended in West Africa, Zika has the world's focus. And, as Carol Pearson reports, health experts and governments are applying some of the lessons learned during the Ebola crisis in Africa to fight the Zika virus in Latin America and the Caribbean.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Illinois Voters Have Mixed Emotions on Obama’s Return to Springfield

    On the ninth anniversary of the launch of his quest for national office, President Barack Obama returned to Springfield, Illinois, to speak to the Illinois General Assembly, where he once served as state senator. His visit was met with mixed emotions by those with a front-row seat on his journey to the White House. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Heated Immigration Debate Limits Britain’s Refugee Response

    Compared to many other European states, Britain has agreed to accept a relatively small number of Syrian refugees. Just over a thousand have arrived so far -- and some are being resettled in remote corners of the country. Henry Ridgwell reports on why Britain’s response has lagged behind its neighbors.
    Video

    Video Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growth

    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.