Mysterious Letters Were Carved on Regeni’s Body by His Murderers

A postmortem investigation has unveiled that the body of the Italian student Giulio Regeni murdered in Egypt was used like a blackboard with suspicion falling on state intelligence agents, reported al-Arabi al Jadeed.

According to al-Arabi al-Jadeed, Regeni had mysterious letters carved onto his body by his captors who tortured,  beat the doctoral student for several days leading to his murder.

Four or five letters carved onto his corpse were found on the 28-year-old Cambridge University graduate, said the postmortem investigation.

The Italian coroners Vittoria Fineschi and Marcello Chiarotti have  written 220-page autopsy report stating “In the dorsal region – to the left of the spine – there is a group of marks which seem to make up a letter.”
“It is reasonable to hypothesize that he was hit with kicks, fists, sticks and hammers.”

One of the letters, resembling an X, was cut onto his left hand. The others were carved into his back, forehead and above his right eye.

Regeni’s mother Paola was quoted in the Telegraph. “They used him like a blackboard,” She also said that her son’s corpse was so badly disfigured that she recognized only his nose.”

Moreover, several bones in Regeni’s body were broken and five of his teeth were smashed by his abductors as found by the two coroners.He also bore several cuts, bruises and burns around his body.

Regeni has disappeared on the fifth anniversary of January Revolution and his body was found on the side of the Cairo-Alexandria highway on February 3 by passengers on a bus that had broken down, according to a police source.

The body showed signs of torture, including cigarette burns and beatings, said Egyptian forensics officials.

International newspapers, Egyptian human rights groups and activists say that Regeni’s body carry the signs of the Egyptian security forces especially that politically motivated disappearances have become a chilling reality in Egypt today.

A recent report published by Amnesty International noted an “unprecedented spike” in enforced disappearances in Egypt since early 2015, with security services using them as a means to quash dissent.

Philip Luther-Amnesty’s Middle East and North Africa director-said”Enforced disappearance has become a key instrument of state policy in Egypt. Anyone who dares to speak out is at risk.”

UK based human rights group said abuses had surged since the military coup that ousted Egypt’s first democratically elected President Mohamed Morsi in 2013, and led to a massive crackdown on Islamist and secular oppositions.

In the same context, a special report was released by Reuters revealed that the Italian Ph.D. student Giulio Regeni made a Skype call from his Cairo flat to an academic in Germany, ten days before he vanished, and he sounded anxious.

Georgeta Auktor, a researcher at the German Development Institute in Bonn, where Regeni had spent a few weeks in 2015, said, “We did not talk very much as it was expected that we will catch up at some point later.”

“He said he feels he needs to be careful where he goes in the city and whom he meets.” However, they did not speak again, reported Reuters.

It seems that Regeni felt that he was followed by the Egyptian security forces.

In fact, this Skype call matches what has been revealed a week ago when some Egyptian sources stated that the mobile call logs analysis in Egypt has proved that Regeni was followed by the Egyptian security forces the day he disappeared. There was no official comment from Egypt regarding this information.

A Private Italian Channel “la7” has reported last week that anonymous sources at the Egyptian capital said that by analyzing nine mobile call logs at Regeni’s location, it was showed that “Regeni was followed from five Egyptian police officers on the day of his disappearance on 25 January 2016.”

The analysis showed that the five police officers, “were moving side by side with Regeni when he took the underground (the metro) of al-Bohous, west Cairo at almost 8 pm before he disappeared.” The Italian Channel’s report said that the Egypt’s general prosecution, “should call the five security officers, who were following Regeni the day he disappeared, for investigations to reach the truth.

However, the Egyptian authorities denied  the accusations and narrated different stories about the Italian student murder. They previously claimed he was killed in a traffic accident. Then, they claimed he was kidnapped and murdered by a gang specialized in killing foreigners. Four suspected men were shot dead by the Egyptian security forces.

None of these stories have convinced the Italian government or his family. Accordingly, Egypt sent a judicial delegation to present evidence of being irresponsible for Regeni’s death, but Italy has responded that the Egyptian report lacks transparency.

The relations between Italy and Egypt have deteriorated since Regeni’s murder. Italy has repeatedly expressed its dissent from the Egyptian authorities which have been accused of not cooperating to find those responsible for Regeni’s brutal death. Moreover, Regeni’s mother accused the Egyptian security forces of being responsible for her son’s murder.

In April, Rome recalled its ambassador to Egypt in the light of the unresolved murder of the Italian Ph.D. student. In addition,t he Italian Senate voted to halt supplies to Egypt of spare parts for F16 warplanes in protest against the killing of Italian student Giulio Regeni.

Last month, Amnesty International spokesman, in Italy, Riccardo Nuri called on Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni to implement more severe measures against Egypt after Cairo’s recent decision not to cooperate with Italian investigators regarding the murder of Italian researcher Giulio Regeni.

Nuri was quoted by an Italian state radio saying that the recent refusal by the authorities in Cairo to cooperate with Italian investigators means that the case has been frozen and the Italian part should initiate taking severe measures toward Egypt as soon as possible.

The committees of foreign affairs, defense, national security and human rights in the Egyptian parliament have endorsed a decision to refuse the Italian side’s demands to handle the recordings of one million voice calls and footage extracted from cameras in a number of places in Egypt.

The Egyptian authorities claim that the decision is that providing such data to Italy would be an “unconstitutional”.  Italy had also reportedly asked Egypt to hand over three people who were linked to Regeni during his stay in Egypt

In response, the rights watchdog spokesman demanded the Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni implement what he promised, which is “more severe measures” against Egypt in the event of non-cooperation regarding the investigation.