Solidarity with Mahienour and Moatasem – jailed for defending the right to protest and strike

Campaigning lawyer Mahienour el-Massry and leading trade unionist Moatasem Medhat have been given two year sentences by an Egyptian court. They have been in jail since November and will appeal the sentence on 13 January.  Mahienour and Moatasem are two of tens of thousands jailed on trumped-up charges by Abdelfattah al-Sisi’s authoritarian military regime. Amnesty International details how the Egyptian authorities use mass arbitrary arrests to suppress dissent.

Mahienour is well-known for defending activists, trade unionists and Syrian refugees from persecution by the authorities. While in prison in 2015 for another protest she was awarded the Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize.

Moatasem Medhat is a member of the Bread and Freedom Party, founding the independent trade union this workplace and serving as its secretary before being sacked for trade union activity. He is also a key figure in the Permanent Conference of Alexandrian Workers, a regional federation of independent unions, fighting for the reform of Egypt’s restrictive trade union and labour laws and campaigning to save jobs in the textile industry. Read more here.

What you can do: 

  • Follow the FreeMahienour page on Facebook for updates on the campaign
  • Download a background A4 leaflet and solidarity poster here.
  • Share solidarity pictures on the FreeMahienour and Egypt Solidarity Initiative Facebook pages.
  • Pass a resolution in your trade union branch condemning the crackdown and calling for the release of Mahienour, Moatasem and all other political prisoners in Egypt.
  • Send a protest message to the Egyptian embassy in your country (contact details here)