Activists fail to reserve funeral hall for Shaimaa El-Sabagh, accuse security

Ahram Online , Wednesday 28 Jan 2015

The Popular Socialist Alliance Party, to which El-Sabagh belonged, accuse the police of deliberately killing her and security agencies of blocking her funeral gathering

Shaimaa El-Sabagh
Shaimaa El-Sabagh (Photo: Al-Ahram)

Activists were not permitted to reserve a mosque hall for a second time Wednesday for the funeral of slain colleague Shaimaa El-Sabagh, killed earlier this week in a peaceful protest, her party said.

Medhat El-Zahed, acting head of the Socialist Popular Alliance Party, to which El-Sabagh belonged, said a leading member of the party tried to reserve a hall in Omar Makram Mosque in Downtown Cairo through the Ministry of Religious Endowments.

Checking the details, the ministry's staff halted the reservation after hearing El-Sabagh's name, saying the hall was "under maintenance."

"The party holds security responsible for this unjustified ban," the party said in a statement Tuesday.

El-Zahed told Al-Ahram Arabic news website Wednesday that the group failed to reserve a funeral hall for the second time, in what he described as "restrictive security."

El-Zahed said another attempt through an official party letter is pending the approval of the religious endowments minister.

Calls have been made to extend condolences on the loss of El-Sabagh in Talaat Harb Square in Downtown Cairo, where she was shot dead. 

El-Sabagh was killed when security forces moved to disperse a few dozen activists and party members aiming to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the country's 2011 revolution.

Investigations have been ongoing since El-Sabagh's death as party members accuse police of deliberately killing her.

The interior ministry, however, has denied the accusation, claiming outsiders infiltrated the protest and shot El-Sabagh.

Hundreds of mourners flocked to El-Sabagh's funeral in her hometown in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria on Sunday.

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