April 6 condemns interior ministry denials over 'Jika' killing

Ahram Online, Monday 11 Feb 2013

Revolutionary youth movement vows 'unprecedented escalation' in response to interior ministry's continued denials of responsibility for death of Gaber 'Jika' Salah and other protesters

Funeral of Gaber Salah (Jika), downtown Cairo, November 2012 (Photo: AP)

April 6 Youth Movement (Ahmed Maher Front) has condemned the interior ministry's claim it did not kill Gaber 'Jika' Salah during the Mohamed Mahmoud Street commemoration clashes. 

During a meeting of the Shura Council (upper house of parliament) human rights committee on Sunday, Abdel-Fattah Osman, deputy assistant secretary at the interior ministry, said Jika did not die from pellet-shot wounds, but from "glass marbles," a new form of weapon that can be made at home.

Osman also said Mohamed El-Gendy, 23, who died on 4 February, was killed in a car accident, not by torture.

El-Gendy, a member of the Popular Current, was reportedly rounded up on the anniversary of the revolution, taken to a state security camp on the outskirts of Cairo, then transported to a hospital. He appeared to have been electrocuted while in custody and was found with wire around his neck.

April 6 co-founder Ahmed Maher said there was "clear complicity" by the authorities to deny responsibility for the deaths, stressing that the movement would not allow the issue to be forgotten.

Jika, 16, a member of April 6, was killed in November 2012 during protests on the first anniversary of the Mohamed Mahmoud Street clashes. He died after being shot in the head and chest.

The group stated on Monday that there would be an "unprecedented escalation" in its pursuit of justice.

We have been patient for too long, but there is a limit, Maher said. The ministry has relieved itself of responsibility for the killing of protesters and this is no different to the Khaled Said case.

Said's death by police helped spark the Egyptian Revolution in 2011. The police denied he was tortured, claiming he choked after trying to swallow a package of drugs.

Maher condemned President Mohamed Morsi for the lack of justice, his silence on the interior ministry's crimes, and for the continuation of Mubarak-era practices.

Widespread protests are expected on Monday to mark the second anniversary of the day Hosni Mubarak was forced to resign as president of Egypt. Protesters also plan to condemn alleged repressive measures imposed by the Islamist-led government, which the opposition says are attempts to crush the revolution.

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