UN wants answers from Egypt over arrests

UN wants answers from Egypt over arrests

GENEVA - Agence France-Presse
UN wants answers from Egypt over arrests

A supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood and ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi raises a picture of the toppled leader in front of Army soldiers blocking Salah Salem highway in Cairo, on July 19. AFP photo

The United Nations is seeking answers from Egypt over the arrests of former President Mohammed Morsi and others following the overthrow of his government on July 3, a spokesman said July 19.

The spokesman for the U.N.'s High Commissioner for human rights, Navi Pillay, said she had called in Egypt's ambassador in Geneva on July 10 and also written to authorities in Cairo for an explanation of events earlier this month. Her spokesman said Pillay specifically requested a list of people arrested in connection with the events of July 3 and beyond, and if they are still in custody and on what legal basis.

She also asked how many people were still currently being detained.

The U.N. wants to know on what legal grounds the former president and his closest advisors were arrested and being detained.

Pillay also wants to know who will sit on a Commission of Inquiry into the events of July 8 when clashes between the army and supporters of Morsi left more than 50 dead.

Emphasising the U.N.'s concern, the same questions were also submitted in writing on July 12 to the government in Cairo.
We have received no response so far," admitted the spokesman on July 19.

The High Commissioner also informed the Egyptian authorities that it wanted to deploy a team to monitor the situation on the ground.

"We are awaiting the green light from the authorities and a team is on standby, ready to be deployed immediately as soon as such approval is received," said the spokesman.