Al Jazeera hunger striker on torture in Egyptian jail

Journalist Abdullah Elshamy, who was released from jail in Egypt on June 17, spoke about his experience with torture and cramped, dirty jail cells.

Al Jazeera hunger striker on torture in Egyptian jail

World Bulletin / News Desk

An Al Jazeera journalist who was released from jail in Egypt after a 149-day hunger strike told the Anadolu Agency the details of the torture he faced during his 309-day detention.

Abdullah Elshamy said Egyptian police forced him to sit down, put his hands behind his neck and then put his head between his knees for two hours, during which he was beaten by an officer every few minutes.

"Some officers would come and hit me with their shoes," Elshamy said. "Some other officers took me out of the line and grabbed my watch and started beating me for a few minutes."

Elshamy was imprisoned on August 14, 2013, the day security forces cracked down on protesters in Cairo's Rabaa Square, killing hundreds. Since July 5, Elshamy was covering the demonstrations being held in support of ousted President Mohamed Morsi, who had replaced with then army chief, now president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

"I saw people getting shot, early as 6 o’clock in the morning," Elshamy said. "In a few minutes before 8 o’clock there were so many people killed; I saw bodies inside the makeshift hospitals."

It was not until the end of the day, during which some journalists were killed, that Elshamy was arrested and he himself became the focus of attention.

Elshamy told AA that he spent his time in a dirty, insect-infested, 20 square meter room shared with almost 100 other people. He said they were given expired food and were forced to clean the room.

"While I was cleaning [the room] they beat me...two officers beat me on the back on the neck on the face...they used their hands they used batons, belts," Elshamy said. "Some of them would go and bring back those things we took out from the dirtiness and they would throw it on me."

Güncelleme Tarihi: 26 Ağustos 2014, 17:57