Egypt’s interior ministry denied on Wednesday that former activist Mostafa Massouny, who has been missing for almost three and a half months, was arrested by the police or any affiliated security apparatuses.
The Twitter hashtag "where is Massouny?" was trending in Egypt early in October, referring to the disappearance of Massouny who vanished after he went to buy some food on the night of 26 June while staying at a friend's home in downtown Cairo.
Massouny's friends and family say that two weeks into his disappearance, his colleagues informed them that State Security agents had been asking about him at work. The interior ministry’s statement was the first official comment since the allegations surfaced.
His family alleges that they reached out to someone in State Security who told them that Massouny was in custody and would be released from the State Security headquarters in Cairo's Lazhougli after investigations were concluded. His family says they still do not know what happened to him or where he is.
The interior ministry says it is intensively investigating his disappearance.
Following the ouster of president Hosni Mubarak in February 2011, Massouny, a university student at the time, was politically active and participated in several youth-led protests.
He was briefly detained in July 2011 while filming a protest against the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces in Luxor. He was also arrested briefly in August 2011 after the dispersal of a Tahrir Square sit-in. In 2012, Massouny switched his attention to a career as a film editor.