Monday, May 08, 2006

The Price of Liberty

Alaa Abd El-Fataah, Egyptian blogger, and others were arrested on Sunday May 7th in Cairo during a protest to support the Judiciary's branch fight for independence (I quote from Sandmonkey). A call has gone out from Sandmonkey to protest a number of detainees by way of emails. Similar protests have been successful in the past by way of getting detainees released.

State Department contact information:

Address:
US Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20520

Main Switchboard: 202-647-4000

URL to send email:
http://contact-us.state.gov/cgi-bin/state.cfg/php/enduser/ask.php?p_sid=We6SaX6i&p_lva=&p_sp=&p_li=

Site with information on contacting your congressional representatives (in
the US):
http://www.ams.org/government/howto.html

The contact information for the Egyptian embassy is below:
The Embassy of the Arab Republic of Egypt
3521 International Ct. NW
Washington DC 20008
Phone (202) 895 5400
Fax (202) 244 5131
(202) 244 4319
Email: embassy@egyptembdc.org

This is a copy of my letter:-
Dear Sir/Madam,

I write regarding the reports that Egyptian blogger Alaa Abd El-Fatah was arrested at a demonstration in Cairo on May 7th, 2006. I understand that he and other protesters were demonstrating peacefully to support the Judiciary's struggle for independence.

Allegations in these reports are alarming. I am a professor at an Episcopal seminary in the USA and an American Citizen. My doctorate from Harvard University Divinity School was on two Coptic Gnostic texts and my research into Christian Origins includes teaching the Coptic langauge and past visits to Egypt. In light of your recent actions however, I will not visit your country and in addition I will warn my colleagues, students, friends, and blog-readers to stay away.

I urge you to release Alaa Abd El-Fatah immediately, along with the other activists arrested with him and to drop charges against them, by means of which you show respect for his right to protest.

Sincerely yours,
Deirdre Good
Professor of New Testament
General Theological Seminary

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