Pardoned Egypt Activist Plans to Travel to Italy, Continue Human Rights Work

pardoned egypt activist plans to travel to italy, continue human rights work

pardoned egypt activist plans to travel to italy, continue human rights work

A prominent Egyptian activist who was freed from prison this week announced on Friday that he would be going to Italy, where his case received a lot of media attention. He declared that he would carry on working in the area of human rights and dividing his time between the two nations.

Patrick George Zaki, who was granted a presidential pardon on Wednesday, expressed his hope that other well-known prisoners of conscience would soon be released, including one of the most well-known, Alaa Abdel Fattah, in an interview with The Associated Press.

We anticipate the president will soon release every political prisoner, Zaki said.

Egypt has been relentlessly suppressing dissent for almost ten years, but in the last year, it has also released dozens of prisoners. The crackdown has been overseen by President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi, who has previously denied that his nation has political prisoners and defended government actions by claiming they are necessary to stop the spread of terrorism.

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The three-year ordeal is over with Zaki’s release, whose cause was supported by the Italian government.

Christian student Zaki was detained in February 2020 not long after arriving in Cairo for a brief trip home from Italy, where he was attending the University of Bologna. After writing an opinion piece in 2019 about alleged prejudice against the Coptic Christian minority in the nation, he was charged with “disseminating false news” and sentenced to prison.

After 22 months of pretrial detention, he was freed in December 2021, but he was required to stay in Egypt and was prohibited from leaving the country until his case was resolved. This month Zaki graduated with honors from his master’s program despite being unable to travel to Italy due to his travel ban. He used a video conference to present his thesis.

A court in Egypt found him guilty of “disseminating false news” and sentenced him to three years in prison just days before he was pardoned.

The tragic story of Italian student Giulio Regeni, who was kidnapped and killed in Cairo in 2016, has been echoed in Italy by Zaki’s case. Since Zaki’s arrest in 2020, the Italian government has demanded his release on numerous occasions.

Zaki announced, “I will be in Bologna next Sunday night,” adding that he would only be traveling briefly because he had to get back to Egypt for his September wedding.

After that, he stated he intended to finish his doctorate in Italy and frequently return to Egypt. He expressed his gratitude to the Italian people for their unwavering support.

He declared that he will carry on advocating for human rights all over the world and get back to work as usual.

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