At about 1 p.m., two hours after Dwedar’s driver reported his arrest, the Interior Ministry posted a short note to its Facebook page summarizing “the results of efforts by the security services” to arrest Brotherhood “central leaders” and “loyalists” accused of attacking public and private property and other “hostile acts.”
On July 14, the independent news website Mada Masr published an investigation into the killings. Citing an anonymous senior criminal investigations officer at the suburb’s Second Police Station, Mada Masr reported that a police agent had “tipped off” the Interior Ministry’s National Security Agency about the upcoming committee meeting, which the officer alleged was intended to “plot a series of sabotage attacks.” A special forces group inspected the site before the meeting, Mada Masr reported, and police forces began the raid at about 10 a.m. According to the officer, who said he participated in the raid by a five-man “special police force,” three men inside the apartment were the first to open fire on the approaching police forces through a wooden door.
Dwedar, a 49-year-old teacher with a wife, four daughters, and two sons, was a member of the Brotherhood’s Guidance Office – its top decision-making body – from Kafr al-Sheikh governorate, in the Nile Delta. He left the governorate early on the morning of July 1 to attend the meeting in October 6 City, his lawyer told Human Rights Watch.
The driver described the neighborhood in October 6 City before saying he was leaving and turning off his phone. Dwedar’s lawyer called Dwedar again, but there was no answer. Later that night, the lawyer spoke with the driver again, asking him to come to Zeinhom Morgue, but the driver said he was going home. The lawyer said he has not spoken with the driver again and that he has probably gone into hiding.
Dwedar’s nephew, who went to the morgue, told Human Rights Watch that Dwedar had been shot once in the back of the head as well as in his stomach and shoulder. He said he also saw a 25 to 30-centimeter stab wound on Dwedar’s back. Dwedar’s face and head were blue, and Dwedar’s nephew said a doctor at the morgue suggested to him that Dwedar might have been strangled.
The lawyer told Human Rights Watch that the wound in the back of Dwedar’s head had a circular burn mark around it, indicating that he had been shot at close range. He told Human Rights Watch that he had previously worked on many shooting cases, including protesters who died during the 2011 uprising and those who were shot and killed on August 14, 2013, when security forces dispersed a large sit-in at Cairo’s Rab’a al-Adawiya Square opposing Morsy’s ouster, killing more than 800 people in one day.
“It’s something I’ve worked with and seen myself,” he said.
Dwedar’s burial permission form states that he suffered broken bones, but his nephew said he did not see those wounds himself. Both of Dwedar’s hands had been fingerprinted. The nephew said he had never seen Dwedar with any weapons.
Nasser Salem Salem al-Hafi
Nasser Al-Hafi, a 54-year-old lawyer from Qalyubia governorate with a wife, three sons, and two daughters, was a member of the supreme committee of the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party and had been elected to parliament in 2012 in the first elections following Mubarak’s ouster in 2011, one of his sons told Human Rights Watch. On June 16, al-Hafi was sentenced to death in absentia in a mass trial also involving Morsy and 97 others in a well-known case alleging that he and other Brotherhood members conspired with militants who killed security forces to help al-Hafi, Morsy, and others break out of prison during the 2011 uprising. Other accusations against al-Hafi included joining a banned group – the Brotherhood – and attacking police and military facilities.
His son told Human Rights Watch that he hadn’t seen his father since August 15, 2013, the day after security forces dispersed the Rab’a al-Adawiya Square sit-in.
At about 2 p.m. on July 1, his son said, he received a call from a lawyer who asked about the family’s welfare before saying, “I want to give you a bit of bad news: Your father might have been taken to prison.”
At about 3:05 p.m., the family was watching the Al Jazeera television network when news appeared onscreen that nine Brotherhood members had been killed, including his father.
The son told Human Rights Watch that when he went to the morgue, he saw that his father had been shot numerous times: once in the chin, two or three times in the side, and five times in the back. He said that he saw dark red blotches around his father’s waistline which he first thought were signs of beating, but which a morgue doctor told him were likely marks from electric shocks.
Al-Hafi’s son said that his father had a wound on his forehead that looked as if someone had hit him, fracturing his skull. Both of al-Hafi’s hands were fingerprinted. Al-Hafi’s burial permission form, seen by Human Rights Watch, states that he died from gunshot wounds and lacerated internal organs.
Osama Ahmed Abd al-Fattah al-Husseini
Al-Husseini, a 56-year-old Arabic and religion teacher with a wife, two sons, and two daughters, led the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party in Kafr al-Sheikh and also served as president of the governorate teachers’ syndicate and head of a local city council, his son told Human Rights Watch.
His son said he last saw his father at dawn on July 1. The family had been living separately from al-Husseini for their own safety, the son said, but al-Husseini had asked them to come to the place he was staying the night of June 30. Like several other families, al-Husseini’s was living in a temporary apartment, having abandoned their home to evade security forces after Morsy’s removal. Al-Husseini had been accused in a number of “political” cases since 2013, his son said, but convictions issued against him had been overturned several times on appeal and he had no final criminal verdict existing against him. Mada Masr reported that al-Husseini was wanted by the authorities. Two weeks after police killed al-Husseini, his son said, a court sentenced him to five years in prison for inciting a protest, blocking a road, and chanting against the army and police.
On the morning of July 1, the family had gathered to observe the dawn prayer ahead of the Ramadan season fasting day. They prayed at home because al-Husseini believed it was too dangerous to pray in public.
Al-Husseini, a diabetic who had lost sight in one eye in 2014 and walked with a cane, rarely had discussed his activities with his family since Morsy’s removal in 2013, his son said. But the night before he left, al-Husseini had not slept and had been giving his son advice about taking care of the family, as if he knew he was going to die, the son told Human Rights Watch.
Al-Husseini left his phone with his son, but at about 9 a.m., the son told Human Rights Watch, al-Husseini called from Sayed Dwedar’s phone to reassure his son that he had arrived at the meeting in October 6 City safely and would call again when the meeting finished, at around 12:30 or 1 p.m.
About half an hour later, someone called al-Husseini’s phone, which was in al-Husseini’s son’s possession, asking for al-Husseini and instructing the son to tell his father that a man named Engineer Fathy – who was supposed to come to the meeting – had been arrested. The man said that police might have arrested al-Husseini as well.
The son said he learned that his father had died after reading the short story on Al Watan’s website. He went to the morgue to retrieve his father’s body and told Human Rights Watch that his father had been shot seven times in his chest and torso and had about five stab wounds in his left shoulder. Al-Husseini’s right arm was “totally shattered” between the elbow and wrist, the son said, and he could see bone protruding. Al-Husseini’s burial permission states that he died from gunshot wounds and lacerated internal organs. Both of al-Husseini’s hands had been fingerprinted.
Hisham Zaki al-Mahdi Khifagy
Hisham Khifagy, a 49-year-old doctor with a wife, three sons, and one daughter, was a Brotherhood official from Qalyubia. He had been convicted in a case alleging that he and others blocked a major road in Qalyubia and killed two people, his son told Human Rights Watch. The son said he last saw his father in August 2013, days after security forces dispersed the Rab’a al-Adawiya Square sit-in. Khifagy participated in the sit-in but went into hiding afterward.
On July 1, his son read on the Internet that his father had been arrested, so he traveled to the Second Police Station in October 6 City that day to learn of his father’s whereabouts. A policeman told him to go to Zeinhom Morgue. At the morgue, his son saw a wound from a bullet that had entered the back of his father’s head and exited through his jaw, and another that entered his right upper back and exited lower, from the right side of his chest. His son said that it seemed as if his father had been shot from above and behind.
His father had been stabbed in the lower back and had a broken right collar bone and dislocated right shoulder, the son said. The son also told an ECRF interviewer that his father showed signs of having been given electric shocks. The son told Human Rights Watch that both of his father’s hands had been fingerprinted. Khifagy’s burial permission form, seen by Human Rights Watch, states that he died from gunshots, broken bones, and lacerated internal organs.
Gamal Saad Ragab Khalifa
Gamal Khalifa, a 50-year-old pediatrician with a wife, four sons, and a daughter, led the Brotherhood’s media operations in Munifiya governorate, in the Nile Delta, before Morsy’s overthrow, and was also head of the doctors’ syndicate for the governorate, his son told Human Rights Watch. Authorities had detained him four times under Mubarak, for periods up to six months, the son said. After Morsy’s removal, prosecutors filed multiple cases against him, but the son said his father was acquitted in all but one, for which he served three months in prison.
His son saw his father for the last time early on the morning of July 1. Khalifa didn’t tell his family about his work with the committee but said only that he was traveling to October 6 City that day. The family learned that he had died from the Interior Ministry’s Facebook posts, the Al Watan website post, and human rights groups.
Another son, who could not be reached, retrieved Khalifa’s body from the morgue, though the son who spoke with Human Rights Watch saw pictures of his father’s body. He told Human Rights Watch that Khalifa had been shot once in the back of the head and at least once elsewhere. His jaw was broken and he had been stabbed in the back. According to the ECRF, both of his hands had been fingerprinted.
Abd al-Fattah Mohamed Ibrahim al-Sisi
Abd al-Fattah al-Sisi, a 51-year-old engineer and businessman with a wife, three daughters, and a son, lived in October 6 City. He established the committee to support the relatives of detained and killed Brotherhood members, said one of al-Sisi’s daughters, who spoke with Human Rights Watch. Authorities arrested him twice under former president Hosni Mubarak, once for two months in 2006 and once for six months in 2010. After Morsy’s removal in 2013, prosecutors filed charges against al-Sisi and froze his bank accounts, and he went into hiding. The family has lived in 15 homes in the two years since the crackdown began, the daughter said.
She told Human Rights Watch that she last saw her father early on the morning of July 1, in an apartment the family had shared for just two weeks, when they all gathered for the dawn prayer. She returned to bed but heard her mother say goodbye to al-Sisi, who left with an envelope of money for the committee and said he would return soon. She said she had never seen her father with a gun.
She said her father and the rest of the family typically did not use the Internet or phones, for security reasons, and that the family heard nothing about her father until seeing news of the killings on television sometime that afternoon. When she and other relatives went to the morgue, she saw one gunshot wound in her father’s neck. She said her uncle saw six gunshot wounds on his body in total.
Human Rights Watch was not able to speak with al-Sisi’s wife, but a relative of his wife told Human Rights Watch that a medical examiner at Zeinhom Morgue told the family that al-Sisi had suffered severe cuts or stab wounds in his back, and that some of the other nine men had as well. The ECRF said that al-Sisi had been fingerprinted.
Taher Ahmed Ismail Abdullah
Taher Ismail, a 50-year-old veterinarian from Qalyubia, left his home on the morning of July 1 to travel to October 6 City, his wife told the ECRF. Mada Masr described Ismail as deputy head of the Brotherhood’s administrative bureau in the governorate. His wife told the ECRF that she heard about his arrest at 1 p.m. and learned around 5 p.m. that he had died.
Ismail’s wife told Human Rights Watch that she could see he had been shot five times, including once in the back of the head, once in his cheek, once in his hand and once in his heart. She said that his body bore signs of torture, including a broken right arm and a broken rib. She also said that both of his hands had been fingerprinted.
Muatasam Ahmed Ahmed al-Agizi
Muatasam al-Agizi was an unmarried 25-year-old sales representative for a pharmaceuticals company who lived in Gharbia governorate, in the Nile Delta. Human Rights Watch was unable to contact any of al-Agizi’s relatives, but the ECRF provided Human Rights Watch with copies of their documents concerning his killing, including information al-Agizi’s mother provided to the ECRF.
His mother told the ECRF that al-Agizi left his home at about 5 a.m. on July 1 to attend the committee meeting in October 6 City and was arrested at about 10 a.m. Al-Agizi’s burial permission form, seen by Human Rights Watch, stated that he died from five bullet wounds to the stomach, lacerated internal organs, and broken bones.
Hisham Ibrahim al-Dessouky
Hisham al-Dessouky was a 54-year-old secondary school adviser from Menoufia with a wife, two daughters, and two sons. Human Rights Watch was unable to contact any of al-Dessouky’s relatives, but the ECRF said that the family learned of al-Dessouky’s arrest at around 2 p.m. on July 1. Al-Dessouky’s wife told the ECRF he lived at home with his family and was not wanted by the authorities, according to her interview with the ECRF. She told the ECRF that al-Dessouky had been shot six times and had stab wounds on his back, and that his hands had been fingerprinted. Al-Dessouky’s burial permission form, seen by Human Rights Watch, states that he died of gunshot wounds to the chest and lacerations to his lungs.
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