Mahalla activist allegedly kidnapped, tortured

Political activist Mohamed Gamal, who goes by the name Hamada al-Abyad, claimed that on Wednesday he was kidnapped in a microbus, subjected to electric shocks and injected with an unknown substance that made him lose consciousness.

Abyad was found on a Mahalla street on Wednesday evening. His body bore marks indicating torture and severe physical abuse.

The activist said the attack occurred when he finished his work at the Mahalla Textile Company and left with his colleagues. On his way back home in the Gomhourreya area, a small white microbus stopped. An unknown person covered Abyad’s eyes with the jacket he was wearing, while others pulled him inside the microbus. They beat him severely and shocked him on different parts of his body.

Abyad said that he had heard the assailants saying “inject him,” when someone injected him with an unknown substance in his shoulder. He then lost consciousness.

“I didn’t realize anything. I found myself lying on rubbish, stripped of my clothes. My hands were tied with my belt, and feet with my t-shirt. I didn’t find my mobile phone or my personal belongings. I tried to untie myself and escaped from where I was. I found some people who I don’t know. They tried to help me. I gave them my mother’s mobile phone. I lost consciousness again and regained it in hospital,” he added.

Mahalla Textile Company employee Mohamed Asad said local residents found Abyad lying on the ground unconscious in Canal Street.The activist was then rushed to a local hospital in critical condition.

Abyad claimed that he received several threats on his mobile phone by unknown people to kill him before the incident, and that some colleagues harassed him for his political activity with opposition parties who are critics of the rule of President Mohamed Morsy and the Muslim Brotherhood.

A medical report was written on Abyad’s condition and the incident was reported to police. No suspects have yet been identified in the case.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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