Urgent Action: Jailed musician faces trumped-up charges
On 5 May 2018, Egyptian authorities arrested 33-year-old musician Rami Sidky at Cairo International Airport. He was detained in connection with a satirical music video, “Balaha,” which had gone viral ahead of the March 2018 presidential elections and appeared to make fun of President El-Sisi. According to his lawyer, Rami Sidky took no part in writing, producing or performing the “Balaha” song. The authorities had already detained the alleged author of the lyrics in March 2018, along with four other individuals accused of involvement in the track's production. In addition, Amnesty International considers that the song is an exercise of the right to freedom of expression.
Rami Sidky, along with his co-defendants in case 480/2018, are facing the trumped-up charges of “membership of a terrorist group” and “insulting the president.”
On 9 February 2019, a judge extended Sidky’s pre-trial detention for another 45 days.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 16 APRIL 2019
Please write urgently in your own words or using the template letter included in English or Arabic to:
Office of the Public Prosecutor, Dar alQada
Cairo, Arab Republic of Egypt
Fax: +202 2577 4716
Salutation: Dear Counsellor
And copies to:
Deputy Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for Human Rights
Ahmed Ihab Gamal-Eldin
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Corniche el-Nile, Cairo, Egypt.
Fax: +202 2574 9713
Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country.
Please check with your section before sending appeals after the above date.