Egyptian or free: Political prisoners forced to renounce citizenship to be released

Published: 12/Jan/2022
Source: Middle East Eye

Several dual-national prisoners of conscience have had to give up their Egyptian nationality in order to leave the country

Egyptian-Palestinian Ramy Shaath’s release from prison after 900 days came as a huge relief to the rights activist and his family – but it also came at a price.

Like many political prisoners in Egypt with foreign passports, Shaath had his nationality stripped as a pre-condition for his release on 6 January. It’s a measure that has been denounced by rights groups and human rights advocates, including Shaath’s family.

“No one should have to choose between their freedom and their citizenship. Ramy was born Egyptian, raised as an Egyptian, and Egypt has always been and will always be his homeland; no coerced renunciation of citizenship under duress will ever change that,” the family said in a statement.

On 13 November 2014, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi issued a decree (known as Law No. 140) allowing the repatriation of jailed foreigners to their home countries.

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Themes: Loss and Deprivation of Nationality
Regions: Egypt
Year: 2022