On 5 March 2023, Egyptian poet Galal El-Behairy began a hunger strike to mark 5 years of his detention in Egypt. On 1 June 2023, Galal quit drinking water. Shortly after, he had to be hospitalized as he was in need of urgent medical assistance.
We are very concerned about the grave risk to Galal’s life and health.
Avant-Garde Lawyers urge the United Nations Working Group to take urgent action to ensure Galal's right to life and to physical and mental integrity are respected and to secure his timely release.
Galal was arrested on 5 March 2018. On 31 July 2018, he was sentenced to 3 years in prison by a Military Court in Cairo, for his unpublished book of poetry, The Finest Women on Earth. Despite having finished serving his sentence in 2021, he was not released but detained on similar accusations in a new case.
The UN Working Group will be looking into Galal's case and give their decision on the arbitrary nature of his detention.