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The New Arab Staff

Morsi's son killed by 'lethal substance' in Egypt, lawyers say

Abdullah Morsi, 25, died after suffering spasms at the wheel of his car [Getty]

Date of publication: 8 September, 2020

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Government reports had alleged that Abdullah Morsi was found dead a year ago due to a heart attack, but his lawyers claim new evidence shows otherwise.
The death of the son of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi was caused by a "lethal substance", lawyers said, contradicting previous government reports that he had suffered a heart attack.

The reports had claimed that Abdullah Morsi, 25, died a year ago this month after suffering spasms at the wheel of his car, from which doctors at a hospital in Giza were unable to revive him.

"Information now disclosed appears to confirm that Abdullah was transported in his car a distance of more than 20km [12 miles] to a hospital after he took his last breath, as a result of having been injected with a lethal substance - and he was not transferred to nearby hospitals, intentionally, until after he had died," said the London-based law firm, Guernica 37 International Justice Chambers, on Sunday.

"It is quite clear that certain elements of the state were aware of this fact that is only now coming to light."

At the time of his death, local news outlets stated there had been no criminal intent behind Abdullah Morsi's death, citing previous health scares and his father's recent death as reasons which could have led to his premature passing.

Abdullah Morsi claimed on Twitter that several top officials of the current Abdul Fattah al-Sisi's government had been complicit in the "assassination" of his father. He had pointed fingers at Interior Minister Mahmoud Tawfiq and the judge who oversaw the Morsi's trial, Mohamed Shereen Fahmy.

His father's death was also scrutinised by rights groups and international observers.

Mohamed Morsi was Egypt's first democratically elected president before he was deposed in 2013 after Sisi led a military coup against him.

Following merely a year in power, Mohamed Morsi died in prison in 2019, awaiting charges which he and observers claimed were politically motivated.

Human Rights Watch called for Egyptian authorities to be investigated over the alleged torture and mistreatment of the former president, demanding that the United Nations Human Rights Council establish an investigation into his death, as well as ongoing violations of human rights in Egypt.

"Former President Morsi's death followed years of government mistreatment, prolonged solitary confinement, inadequate medical care, and deprivation of family visits and access to lawyers," said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East and North Africa director at Human Rights Watch.

"At the very least, the Egyptian government committed grave abuses against Morsi by denying him prisoners' rights that met minimum standards."

Morsi, 68, collapsed into a coma while being held in a courtroom cage during one of his trials. According to Egypt's prosecutor general's office, the former president lost consciousness after speaking for roughly five minutes.

During his six years in detention, Egyptian authorities allegedly denied Morsi sufficient medical care and blocked family visits. This was despite repeated requests to Egypt's judiciary for access to medical care.

HRW has highlighted that such treatment violates the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and contravenes the UN Standard Minimum Rules on the Treatment of Prisoners.

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