CAIRO — A leading rights group has condemned “the biggest crackdown” under Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, following scattered anti-government protests last month.
Wednesday’s statement by Amnesty International says Egyptian security forces have rounded up more than 2,300 people, including 111 children, in the crackdown.
The mass arrests followed scattered protests on Sept. 20, after corruption allegations by an Egyptian businessman living in self-imposed exile against the president and the military. El-Sissi dismissed them as "sheer lies."
Najia Bounaim, Amnesty’s campaigns director for North Africa, says el-Sissi’s government “has orchestrated this crackdown to crush the slightest sign of dissent and silence every government critic.”
Amnesty also urged authorities to release “anyone detained solely for peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of assembly or expression.”
Egyptian authorities have released dozens of detainees this week.