Solidarity Message to the Peasants of Egypt
We, advocates of farmers’ rights, activist researchers and members of social movements and mass organizations, express our grave concerns over the increased violence and injustice in the countryside of Egypt. According to the independent human rights group, Land Center for Human Rights, there were continuous attacks against the farmers, women and children in the village of Sarando in the province of El Behira and village of El Monira in El Qalubeya by thugs hired by former landowners and claimers to force them out of their land.
In the village of Sarando alone, thirteen women and 5 children were randomly arrested and detained at a local police station without any clear charges. These women and children will be released only in the condition that the village farmers accused of trespassing, stealing the crops of a landowner and illegal possession of firearms, will turn themselves in. According to the LCHR, the landowner/claimer fabricated these cases/complaints to force the farmers out of their land. Hundreds of those who live in the area and adjacent villages have also left their homes and lands for fear of their lives.
In El Qalubeya, peasants and villagers were terrorized by security forces and thugs hired by a former ambassador claiming ownership to a piece of state land that was cultivated by the peasants for more than 50 years. Supporters of the rights of these villagers, on the other hand, are targeted for intimidation, arrest and harassment.
Farmers, women and children in these villages are clamoring for justice and right to land in a country where the large landowners and the powerful still own and control the overwhelming majority of the nation’s productive lands. But until now, no one has been brought to justice.
We recognize that land is life to the peasants. Their hope and strength lie in the land, which gives strength and assures the life of a nation. We are committed and attached to the struggle for justice and access to land of all peasants, working people and oppressed in Egypt and across the global South.
We denounce the continuing violations of human rights of peasants, women and children in Egypt’s countryside. We add our voices to the increasing number of human rights activists, farmers, and social movements across Egypt who are calling upon its authorities, especially the Interior Minister and Prosecutor General, to immediately stop the violence, abuse and humiliation against the people of El Monira and El Sarando and apprehend and bring to justice all the landowners and their hired goons responsible for these crimes.
We also call for the release of the women and children illegally detained by local police forces.
We urge the Egyptian authorities to guarantee the rights of farmers to a decent and dignified life.
We express our deepest solidarity to the family members and communities of those who have been affected by the violence and rural unrest.
Finally, we call on our allies and organizations to support the struggle of farmers in Egypt, urgently speak out and act against the violence being perpetrated against rural peoples to silence their organizing and resistance.
For more information contact:
Land Center for Human Rights
122. Galaa St, Ramsis Tower, 7th floor, Cairo, Egypt
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org – email@example.com
Web site: http://www.lchr-eg.org