15 September 1997


Novelist Ala'a Hamed freed pending ruling from the Court of Cassation

Incident details

Ala'a Hamed



(WiPC/IFEX) - On 3 August 1997, Ala'a Hamed (also reported as
Allaa Hamed and Alaa Hamed) and his lawyers appeared before
the Cairo Appeal Court to petition judges to suspend Hamed's
one-year prison sentence until the Court of Cassation issues a
final ruling on the case.

**Updates IFEX alerts dated 15 August, 25 July, 25 and 2 June

In court, Hamed protested against the poor prison conditions
and reportedly stated that he would be driven to suicide if he
was forced to remain in prison. It is believed that Hamed's
health is precarious and that he has not received adequate
medical treatment while in detention. The petition was
accepted and Hamed was subsequently released.

According to WiPC, this release is only a temporary measure
and Hamed may be re-arrested should the Court of Cassation
decide that there were no procedural irregularities in his
trial. The exact date for the ruling is not yet known.

Recommended Action

Send appeals to authorities:

  • welcoming the decision by the Court of Appeal to suspend
    Ala'a Hamed's sentence but expressing concern that he may
    still face further imprisonment
  • stating that the one-year sentence given to Hamed contravenes
    his right to freedom of expression
  • urging that the case against him be quashed

    Appeals To

    General Hassan al-Alfy
    Minister of the Interior
    Ministry of the Interior

    Al-sheik Rihan Street
    Bab al-Louk
    Cairo, Egypt

    And the diplomatic representative in your country:

    (In Canada)
    Embassy of the Arab Republic of Egypt
    454 Laurier Avenue East
    Ottawa, ON
    K1N 6R3
    Fax: (613) 234-9347

    Please copy appeals to the source if possible.

  • Source

    International PEN
    Writers in Prison Committee
    International PEN
    Brownlow House
    50-51 High Holborn
    London WC1V 6ER
    United Kingdom
    wipc (@) internationalpen.org.uk
    Fax:+ 44 0 20 74050339
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