President Trump urged to raise juvenile death sentences with President el-Sisi

April 9, 2019

Reprieve is calling on President Trump to urge his Egyptian counterpart, President el-Sisi, to stop sentencing innocent children to death, when the two meet today.

President el-Sisi has overseen a surge in executions since he came to power in 2013. At least 10 juveniles have received preliminary death sentences and at least 1,451 death sentences have been confirmed overall.

One such juvenile is Ahmed Saddouma, who was arrested in 2015, without a warrant, and held in incommunicado detention for 80 days where he was denied access to his family or a lawyer. Ahmed was tortured by police and forced to sign a false confession before being sentenced to death as part of a mass trial in February 2018.

Commenting on today’s meeting, Reprieve Director Maya Foa, said:

“President el-Sisi’s use of the death penalty is now a full-blown human rights crisis. Hundreds of people have been sentenced to death in flagrantly unfair mass trials – including children. Ahmed Saddouma was just 17 when he was dragged from his bed, brutally tortured, and sentenced to death as part of a mass trial. The international community must not stand idly by while el-Sisi commits such atrocities, and President Trump must urge his Egyptian counterpart to stop sentencing innocent children to death.”

ENDS