Prominent Egyptian activist Mamdouh Hamza returns home after removal from arrival watch-list

Ahram Online , Monday 13 Feb 2023

Prominent Egyptian political activist and opposition figure Mamdouh Hamza, 75, returned home on Sunday - after more than three years abroad - a few days after his name was removed from the arrival watch-list.

Mamdouh Hamza


Hamza, a distinguished civil engineer, left the country in 2019 amid a an investigation in legal complaint that accused him of inciting against the government.

In October 2020, the High Emergency State Security Court placed Hamza on the terrorism lists and sentenced him to six months in prison in absentia over charges of inciting violence and spreading false news.

On Thursday, the investigation authorities removed Hamza from the travel ban and arrival watch lists.

In January of last year, authorities also removed his name from terrorism lists.

Shortly after landing at Cairo International Airport from Beirut, Hamza posted a video on his Facebook saying he was received at the airport by a high-ranking officer who welcomed him home as one of Egypt's "loyal sons."

He stressed in the video that he is “optimistic” because of the removal of his name from the watch-list, describing it as a sign of  ”openness" and that the country "is moving in the right direction."

“I hope that this openness extends beyond me beacause I have met so many other loyal sons abroad and there are also many loyal sons in prison,” Hamza said.

In recent months, Egypt has released hundreds of pretrial political detainees and pardoned many prominent figures who had received final jail sentences in various cases as the government embarked on a national dialogue with various forces to discuss national priorities on economic and social issues.

Hamza told private news website Masrawy that he will be standing for a retrial on 30 June.

Short link: