International News

Prominent activist Sanaa Seif Released In Egypt After 18 Months In Jail For “Spreading False News”

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Prominent activist Sanaa Seif was released from an Egyptian prison on Thursday after serving an 18-month prison sentence on charges of “spreading false news,” as confirmed by her family.

Seif’s sister, fellow activist Mona Seif, has posted a photo of the two of them at their home in Giza. The activist was sentenced after denouncing the increase in coronavirus cases that would be occurring in the country’s prisons.

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(Photo via getty images)

Sanaa Seif, one of the best-known faces of the popular revolution of 2011 that caused the fall of the Hosni Mubarak regime, was arrested in June 2014 for a demonstration against the law that regulates the right to protest and sentenced to two years in prison.

Sanaa Seif re-arrested

However, she was released in September 2015 after a presidential pardon signed by Abdelfatá al Sisi. Subsequently, she was arrested in June 2020 when she was going to report an attack in front of the Torah prison, after which she was accused of “spreading false news” and sentenced to 18 months in prison.

The 27-year-old activist is the daughter of well-known human rights lawyer Ahmed Seif and the sister of activist and blogger Alaa Abdelfatá, sentenced this week to five years in prison for “spreading false news” and “joining an illegal group.”

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Sanaa Seif and her colleagues: (Photo via getty images)

Along with Abdelfatá, the lawyer Mohamed al Baqer and the blogger Mohamed ‘Oxygen’ Ibrahim were sentenced to four years in prison.The three were arrested in September 2019 on charges of “spreading false news.”

The ruling came a month after Egypt’s Court of Cassation rejected a petition against the inclusion of Abdelfatá and former presidential candidate Abdel Moneim Abul Futu, among others, on the African country’s terrorist list.

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Sanaa Seif (Photo via getty images)

Al Sisi came to power in July 2013 through a coup that he led after a series of massive demonstrations against the then-president, the Islamist Mohamed Mursi, the country’s first democratically elected president, who died in 2019 during a judicial hearing against him.

The leader has promoted a broad campaign of repression and persecution against opponents, both from liberal groups and Islamist organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood, an initiative that human rights groups have denounced as the most serious in recent times.