Egypt arrests former Sisi campaigner turned critic

Egypt arrests former Sisi campaigner turned critic

Egypt arrests former Sisi campaigner turned critic

Egyptian police have arrested a one-time campaigner for President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi who became a critic of the former military chief, an official said on May 27.

The police official did not give a reason for the overnight arrest of Hazim Abdelazim, who headed the youth committee in Sisi’s 2014 presidential election campaign.

Abdelazim is especially active on Twitter, where he has 752,000 followers and regularly criticizes Sisi and his policies.

“I have been right and I have made mistakes, and my biggest mistake was accepting to join Sisi’s campaign,” Abdelazim says on his Twitter profile.

Abdelazim’s detention follows that of other bloggers this month, including Wael Abbas who was arrested at his home on Wednesday, Sherif Gaber, and Shady Abuzaid, known for his YouTube and Facebook videos.

Earlier last week, an Egyptian military court sentenced journalist and researcher Ismail Alexandrani to 10 years in prison.

Alexandrani, an expert on jihadism in the Sinai Peninsula, was arrested in November 2015 and accused of belonging to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.

Since 2013, international human rights groups have criticised Sisi’s government for cracking down on secular and left-wing activists, as well as Islamists close to the Brotherhood.

Sisi was elected president a year after heading the 2013 military ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, amid mass protests against him.

He was re-elected in March after securing more than 97 percent of the vote.