Egypt: Detained for 36 Hours

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Egyptian riot police gather near burning tires as a demonstrator throws an object towards them during a protest in Cairo, Egypt on January 26, 2011 Egyptian riot police gather near burning tires as a demonstrator throws an object towards them during a protest in Cairo, Egypt on January 26, 2011 (AFP/Getty Images)

The Egyptian police has rounded up human rights activists, protest organizers and journalists without formal charges. Most arrests have reportedly lasted fewer than 24 hours. However, arbitrary arrests are not new in a country where law enforcement has sweeping powers under a state of emergency that's been in place almost non-stop for the past 30 years. Daniel Williams, a senior researcher in the emergencies division of Human Rights Watch, was held captive by the Egyptian army for 36 hours. His experience changed the way he viewed the army and it's role in the crisis in Egypt.

At least 75 Egyptian activists and about 30 foreign journalists have reportedly been captured since the protests began, including at least seven people who disappeared last Thursday as they were returning from a meeting with opposition leader Mohammed El Baradei.

Guests:

Daniel Williams

Produced by:

David J Fazekas

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