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A letter from Ahmed Nasr, slowly dying in Egypt’s dungeons


May 26, 2016
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Detainee Ahmed Nasr Obaid has sent a distress message to whomsoever it may concern calling upon them to save his life from death which shall inevitably consume him inside the prisons. He talks about his continuing hunger strikes and clarifies the reasons for these strikes.

The letter:

In the Name of Allah the Beneficent, the Merciful

My name is Ahmed Nasr Obaid and I am 29 years old. I am a private sector accountant, engaged, and I belong to the Beheira Governorate, Abu al-Matameer Centre. I am writing with my left hand as you can tell from my handwriting..

My right foot has been amputated and my thumb and forefinger have been cut off. My little finger, ring finger and middle finger too are severed. This means 6 of 15 joints remain. My right arm is fractured and it is the same arm whose fingers have been severed. I suffer from more than five fractures in the arm, there is fragmentation in the joints and two fractures in the remaining fingers. There is adhesion in the tendons and muscle atrophy that I suffer from. I have an abscess in my ear which oozes with a continuous flow of pus. My blood circulation is low. I have ulcers in the stomach, the retina of my right eye bleeds and there are fragments of the cartridge in my left eye, around it and in my nose..

I have been incarcerated in the Damanhour General Prison since my arrest from Alexandria University Hospital in May 2015. At the time, I was taken to Tora Prison on 8/10/2015 for medical treatment in the prison’s hospital. I was then taken to Luxor Eye Hospital since Damanhour Prison was not equipped to treat microscopic wounds like the ones I was suffering from. From that day onwards, the doctors of Luxor Eye Hospital have acknowledged that I am in need of surgical intervention after which I need physiotherapy. I have since been tormented and troubled between Damanhour and Tora prisons, each time they haul me into a lorry to kill me and show me different forms of torture, then they take me back to Tora and bring me to the Luxor Eye Hospital at undefined times after which Luxor Eye assigns new appointments to bring me back. The prison does not agree to transport me due to State Security’s rejection..

On 31/3/2016, I was finally brought to Luxor Eye Hospital for the operation but the guards did not allow me to enter and I was transported back to prison again. Since that day, I have been given many appointments for the operation but sometimes it is Tora Prison which rejects these appointments and at times it is State Security and sometimes even the Cairo Security Directorate. Because I was repeatedly denied my requests for medical intervention, I decided to begin my strike on Saturday 30/4/2016. Since Saturday, I have not eaten any food hoping that the prison acts and takes me to hospital.

They promised to take me to hospital on 5/5/2016 but the same scenario unfolded again with the same arrogance and torture. I am languishing in the prison fighting with death, suffering from low blood pressure and different medical conditions that have plagued my body. My sides are wounded and the ulcers threaten internal bleeding in the stomach. With all of this, and I have not been given any form of treatment or painkillers until now…

I am being subjected to slow death and they punish me because I demand my rights. I have narrated only a small part of my condition and have left out the details of the condition in which I am detained. I do not have the energy to do so and I get sick when I think about it..

I am continuing my hunger strike – either I shall die or I shall be treated – because either way, I am like a dead body. I do not know when I eat or sleep or go to the bathroom due to the many wounds on my body. I am imprisoned in a state which does not have mercy on its patients.

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