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Rights activists slam 'illogical' UN decision to hold torture conference in Egypt

The decision has triggered criticism from rights activists [Getty]

Date of publication: 17 August, 2019

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The United Nations is set to hold a conference on torture in Egypt, where authorities are accused of rampant human rights abuses.
The United Nations is set to hold a conference on torture in Egypt, where authorities are accused of rampant human rights abuses.

The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) will co-host the regional conference on criminalising torture with the Egyptian government next month.

The decision has triggered criticism from rights activists.

"It's illogical for a country where torture is systematic to host a conference on torture," activist Mohamed Zaree told Reuters.

Gamal Eid, director of the Arab Network for Human Rights Information, said the move was an attempt by the government to polish its image.

Rights groups have long accused Egyptian authorities of systemic torture that could amount to "crimes against humanity".

Around 60,000 political prisoners have been detained since President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi took power in 2013 in a military coup.

Many of those have reported torture and other forms of abuse in detention.

Egyptian authorities have repeatedly denied allegations that they engage in torture.

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