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Eyewitnes account: AUC student detained on her way to Tahrir

Ahram Online, Friday 4 Feb 2011
Views: 1623
Views: 1623

Marwa Ahmed, a university student, was kidnapped and detained for five hours after being stopped on her way to Tahrir Square.

Ahmed, who is a student of Political Science at the American University in Cairo (AUC), was on her way to Cairo from the Delta city of Zaqaziq, intending to join today's Departure Friday protest in Tahrir Sq. On the road, the mini-bus she was on was stopped by the police and all those suspected of intending to go to Tahrir were detained.

“They kept stopping cars heading for Cairo, and taking anyone they suspected was going to Tahrir,” says Ahmed. “There were 30 of us and I was the only girl.”

After being detained, Ahmed was sent back to Zaqaziq, were she was taken to the local police station. “I was taken before an officer who mockingly asked me to tell him about my ‘relatives’ in Tahrir, and pointed to the TV, which was giving live footage from the square,” recounts Ahmed. “When I told him they are not my relatives and they are all Egyptians, he began insulting me and telling me that we the protesters have ruined the country.”

Ahmed, who does not belong to any opposition party or youth group, said that she was held at the police station for five hours, as the officers passed her from one to the other, and demanded she tell them which political group she belonged to.

“I was wearing a Palestinain Kaffiya, and one officer asked me if I bought it from Hamas,” recalls Ahmed.

The AUC student was finally released but was not allowed to travel to Cairo.

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