Egypt: No Peace Without Justice congratulates exiled Egyptian dissident Saad Eddin Ibrahim after Court’s decision to overturn a two-year prison sentence based on flimsy charges

26 May, 2009 | Press Releases

Statement by Sergio Stanzani and Niccoló Figa-Talamanca, President and Secretary General of No Peace Without Justice:
“No Peace Without Justice (NPWJ)welcomes the decision of the Egyptian Appeals Court to overturn a two-year prison sentence against the exiled Egyptian dissident Saad Eddin Ibrahim, who had been convicted in absentia, on 2 August 2008, on the flimsy charge of “tarnishing Egypt’s reputation” in a series of articles and speeches on citizenship and democracy in which he criticised the Egyptian regime. This is not the first time that Prof. Ibrahim has been acquitted by an Egyptian court after having been tried on false charges – “defaming Egypt” and accepting European Commission’s funding without authorisation for his Ibn Khaldun Centre for Social and Developmental Studies – for which he served a sentence between 2000 and 2003.

Professor Ibrahim is a longstanding friend and partner of NPWJ, and we profoundly admire his dedication to the promotion of democracy and human rights, and applaud his peaceful and academic pursuit of these ideals for the benefit of Egypt and the Arab world.

Last year, following the announcement of his conviction, NPWJ launched an appeal to express its deep concern about the continuous prosecutorial hounding of Professor Ibrahim by the Egyptian authorities, preventing him from exercising his fundamental rights to freedom of thought and freedom of expression. The appeal, supported by democracy advocates from 14 countries of the MENA region, denounced the protracted persecution of Professor Ibrahim in his own country, which harms the image of Egypt more than it harms the image of a well-known defender of human rights and democracy in Egypt and throughout the Arab world.

The Court’s decision further reinforces NPWJ continuing support for those in the MENA region who dedicate their lives to the promotion of democratic values and the respect of human rights. We hope that this is a first positive signal toward a comprehensive reconciliation between the Egyptian regime and the opposition and we urge the political and judicial authorities of Egypt to drop all remaining allegations against Prof. Ibrahim, allowing him to return, as a free man, to his country”.

For more information please contact Gianluca Eramo, phone:  +32-2-548 39 29  – or Nicola Giovannini, phone:  +32-2-548 39 14  – fax: +32-2-548 39 19 – Check also our website: