Calls for releasing ill Brotherhood spokesman jailed in Egypt

Egyptian social media activists on Sunday launched a campaign calling for saving the life of Gehad Haddad who suffered from food contamination in an Egyptian jail.

Since the military overthrow in July 2013 of Egypt’s then president Mohamed Morsi, the regime of General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has engaged in the systematic repression of the Muslim Brotherhood, of which Morsi is a member. It has done so by implementing policies commonly regarded as effective means of “decapitating” hierarchical organizations, particularly those with a significant capacity to mobilize grassroots support and generate public sympathy.

Thirty-eight-year-old Gehad Haddad, a father of two who holds an MBA from a British university and headed several regional and international financial institutions, was arrested on 17 March 2013 and has been severely beaten while in detention.

According to the activists, he now suffers from convulsions due to the intentional lack of medical care at the notorious Scorpion Prison in Cairo.

He is the son of Essam Haddad who worked as an advisor of the late Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi.

Reports state between 60,000 and 80,000 political prisoners are being held in Egyptian prisons since the ouster of Morsi in 2013, the majority on political grounds because of their refusal to accept the bloody military coup which ousted the country’s first democratically elected president, Morsi.

The Sisi regime took office in June 2014. Like the interim government that was under Sisi’s control following Morsi’s removal, it has adopted two leading approaches in suppressing the Muslim Brotherhood. First, it has targeted lines of command within the Brotherhood to destroy the leadership’s control over the organization. Second, to isolate the Brotherhood, it has constructed a narrative attempting to link it to violent Islamism.

However, after nearly five years of such tactics, and despite numerous statements that the Muslim Brotherhood was at its end, the regime has failed to prevail. On the contrary, the Brotherhood has proven to be highly resilient, and there have even been signs of internal renewal, underlining that the regime’s policies may be futile and counterproductive. If this continues, it could eat away at Sisi’s legitimacy and even the stability of his regime.