A letter from a young Egyptian political prisoner to his mother.

As the international community continues to support Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s brutal regime, we hold the regime, and by extension, all those who continue to support it, accountable for the horrific abuse suffered by Abdul-Rahman Jamal Metwally Al-Shuwaikh.  

Yesterday, I visited Abdel Rahman, my son at a high security prison in Minya. For the first time, I witnessed the plight of my son who looked extremely sad and tired.  He told me that he had been beaten, tortured, and sexually assaulted by monsters who disguise themselves in human skin.

This is an excerpt from the letter he wrote to me:

“My mother, I hesitate a lot in writing these words to you because the most severe thing that could have happened to me in prison, happened on 04/06/2021. It was not just torture; it was sexual assault that broke me mentally and made me hate myself. I left it for up to the judgement of the almighty.

Oh mom, you have to come, because it could be the last time you see me. I am going to go on a hunger strike, abstaining even from water. Help me, mother, with whatever you can do in this matter.

Report to the Attorney General and human rights organizations and make my voice heard. Make Omar file a case with the United Nations. I will not eat or drink anything until I die because I intend to live by the Hadith of our Prophet, that “Whoever dies defending his honour is a martyr.”

I hesitated to tell you this because I do not want to make you sad or angry, but it has been extremely hard on me, and I just had to tell you, Mom. There are a lot of details I want to share with you, and that is why I want you to come to me. I was subject to this abuse because I recited one of the Prophet’s Hadith every day to teach other prisoners. There is a prisoner, a criminal, who holds immense authority within the prison. He is the criminal boss of sorts, higher than the informants themselves, who himself deals with the chief of investigations. He has everyone in the prison working for him, opening the door for him, taking out his trash, etc.

This man was upset with me for reciting the Hadith every day, and forced me into solitary confinement two months ago. At that time, I was having money troubles in the prison canteen and complained to this man that someone else was signing under my name and taking my money. I told him that that I will file a case of forgery and theft to resolve this problem and find out who was behind it. I asked him for a solution to this problem.

The last time I spoke to this man, we argued a lot because I told him that no action was being taken. He threatened me, adding “I will teach you how to raise your voice while talking to me.” Then he called the informants and other prison guards to grab me, tie me up, blindfold my eyes, and rip off my clothes. As I lay completely naked, I was screaming for them to cover my body and let me go. They sexually assaulted me, in more ways than just one. They violated my honour. After that they removed my blindfold and made me kneel, as if I am in prayer, under the foot of the man in charge, all the while my hands and feet were bound.

When I told the informants that they were doing this all because of a criminal prisoner, who was upset because of the Prophet’s hadiths, they kept torturing me. I kept telling them to remember doomsday, that they will be answerable to God for the things they did to me. I told them that their day of judgement will come day. This fuelled their rage and they moved to rape me again as I was kneeling under the man’s foot.  

Anyway, I still thank god for he is sufficient. He is the only one to rely on. Forgive me, mom for telling you.”

The following people were involved in this heinous crime:

1.         Minya Prison Officer: Muhammad Muhammadin.

2.         Minya Prison Block Secretary: Amran.

3.         Informant: Hussein.

4.         Informant: Ashraf.

5.         The criminal (boss) who ordered everyone else: Alaa Nagy (Abu Mando).

6.         Soldiers from the strike force in Minya Prison.

Yesterday, after the visit, I submitted a verbal complaint to each of the officer present during the visit and the prison warden. Then I went to the Public Prosecution headquarters of Minya and filed a written complaint that included the incident of physical and sexual abuse with names attached.


Mohamed Ismail
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, USA

Mohamed Shoubair
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, USA

Fisal M Hammouda
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, USA

Maissa Abdelatif
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, UK

Yousreya Abdel Hamid Khalil PhD.
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, USA

Mohamed Abdelrehim
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, Turkey

Salah El Doby
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, Switzerland

Mona Elshazly, Engineer
Human rights activist
Egyptians Abroad For Democracy, UK

Abeer Omar
Assistant professor Trent university,
Egyptians Abroad For Democracy, Canada

Mohamed Abdelhalim
Egyptian Abroad for Democracy, UK

Asmaa EL Serafy
Human rights activist
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, Turkey

Sherif Elgendy M.D.
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, USA

Ghada Naguib
Human rights and political activist
Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, Turkey

Nancy kamal abdelhamed aly

Egyptians Abroad for Democracy, Germany