Egyptian activist Alaa Abdel Fattah 'weak and vulnerable' after hunger strike

© AFP - KHALED DESOUKI

Egyptian-British pro-democracy blogger Alaa Abdel Fattah ended his seven-month hunger strike from jail earlier this week and was finally allowed a family visit. His sister said it was “unsettling” to see him in such a poor state of health.

“When we saw him today, he was exhausted, weak, and vulnerable. He was very, very thin,” said a statement released by the family after their visit.

"Alaa deteriorated severely in the past two weeks, but at least they got to see him, and he needed to see the family so much," wrote his sister, Mona Seif, on social media.

He had only been consuming 100 calories per day, but decided to stop eating food, and then drinking water, on 6 November in an effort to call attention to his plight.

The protest coincided with the Egypt-hosted Cop27 climate summit. His case gained attention during the UN talks, highlighting Egypt’s dismal human rights record.

Fattah was also seeking a visit from British consular officials. Egypt has refused to recognize that Fattah, 40, is a UK citizen.

His mother, Laila Soueif, was allowed to see him after nearly a month and repeated attempts to access the Wadi al Natrun prison.

Forced treatment

Officials were reportedly pressuring him to be medically examined at the prison's health centre, which he refused, and riot police were brought in to take him out.

“As he was being carried out he lost it, had a meltdown and promised to kill himself if he was taken back to the cell,” according to the family statement.


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