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Family of jailed blind sheikh calls on military rulers to bring him back from the US ‎

The elder son of imprisoned cleric Omar Abdel Rahman has called on the Supreme Council of the ‎Armed Forces to press for his swift release

Ahram Online, Sunday 2 Oct 2011
Omar Abdel Rahman
Omar Abdel Rahman

Abdullah, the elder son of imprisoned cleric Omar Abdel Rahman, has claimed that US prison ‎authorities have been mistreating his father. He has called on the Supreme Council of the ‎Armed Forces to press for his release. ‎

Abdel Rahman, a leading figure of Al-Gamaa Al-Islamiya, has been jailed in the US for ‎nearly two decades for his "involvement" in the 1993 World Trade Centre ‎bombing. He is also said to have planned the 2001 attacks on the twin towers and the ‎Pentagon’s headquarters from inside prison.‎

The family of Abdel Rahman has been calling for his release more intensely over the past ‎couple of months. They have repeatedly protested at the US embassy headquarters, ‎having held a sit-in since August.‎

It is now expected that they will intensify their demonstrations as Abdullah says the ‎blind cleric is receiving inhuman treatment in the US prison facility.‎

Abdullah said his father told him over the phone that he was denied breakfast and ‎morning medicine for no apparent reason, before he was obliged to do the laundry, ‎according to El-Shark El-Awsat newspaper.‎

Abdel Rahman, 73, lost his sight 10 months after his birth and ‎now is using a wheelchair to move around. He used to send his clothes to the prison laundry.

Abdullah said that Abdel Rahman’s family will maintain the sit-in in front of the US ‎embassy in Cairo until his father is freed. He also said they are waiting to see whether or not the ruling military council will step in to bring ‎Abdel Rahman back to Egypt. ‎

Abdel Rahman, who has a master’s degree, has been serving a life sentence. He was ‎previously sentenced to prison in Egypt in the 1970s.‎ He used to work in the Ministry of Endowments.‎

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