Egypt — Who Tortured Giulio Regeni to Death? And Why?

“On 7 January 2016, just a month after the union meeting, Mohamed Abdallah denounced Regeni to the authorities (…) because his questions were not about street vendors … and had other intentions. The Egyptian government placed Regeni under investigation, but decided after a few days that his research was of no interest to National Security.”

The Guardian (October 4 2016)

“What also has become clear is that Giulio had for months attracted the attention of Egypt’s state apparatus, which continued in an increasingly pressing way until 25 January.”

Rome prosecutor Giuseppe Pignatone (January 25 2018)

giulio-regeni

Giulio Regeni

The death of this young man shocked and outraged Italians. Giulio Regeni was an Italian student who went missing in Cairo after speaking to trade union and opposition activists. His mutilated body was later found on the side of the road. He appeared to have been horribly tortured. Why was he murdered? Why a botched investigation? Was he a spy? For whom? Follow us on Twitter: @Intel_Today

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UPDATE (May 31 2018) — CAIRO – The cooperation between Egypt and Italy’s public prosecutors is still ongoing in the case of murdered Italian student Giulio Regeni, according to an official joint statement issued on Tuesday. Egypt handed Italy a final copy of the CCTV footage related to the case.

“Further meetings between delegates from both the Italian and Egyptian prosecutors are scheduled to take place soon to discuss the latest updates regarding the case and the findings of the recordings.

The statement issued by both the Italian and Egyptian prosecutors said that a phone call between Prosecutor General Nabil Sadek and his Italian counterpart, Giuseppe Pignatone, took place on Monday.

The call discussed the efforts exerted by both sides during the roughly one year of continued investigations.”

In the joint statement, both sides affirm their serious intentions to continue their hard work until reaching the truth. END of UPDATE

Giulio Regeni (15 January 1988 – 1st or 2nd February 2016) was an Italian Cambridge University graduate who was abducted and tortured to death in Egypt. Regeni was a PhD student at Girton College, Cambridge, researching Egypt’s independent trade unions.

Previously, Regeni had been an employee of the international consulting firm ‘Oxford Analytica’.

Regeni’s mutilated and half-naked corpse was found in a ditch alongside the Cairo-Alexandria highway on the outskirts of Cairo on February 3, 2016.

“His recovered body showed signs of extreme torture: contusions and abrasions all over from a severe beating; extensive bruising from kicks, punches, and assault with a stick; more than two dozen bone fractures, among them seven broken ribs, all fingers and toes, as well as legs, arms, and shoulder blades; multiple stab wounds on the body including the soles of the feet, possibly from an ice pick or awl-like instrument; numerous cuts over the entire body made with a sharp instrument suspected to be a razor; extensive cigarette burns; a larger burn mark between the shoulder blades made with a hard and hot object; a brain hemorrhage; and a broken cervical vertebra, which ultimately caused death.”

Official Investigation or Cover-Up? Egyptian officials have been  floating various theories in the media: Regeni was gay and the victim of a crime of passion, he was involved in a drug deal gone bad, or else he was a foreign spy.

Forensic Sciences — It is almost certain that Regeni was tortured by ‘professionals’ over a period of many days.

Although he disappeared on January 25th, Regeni was still alive on February 1st and some of his earliest wounds had begun to heal. Some of the tortures he endured  are said to be regularly used by the Egyptian police.

“The forensic doctors at the University of Rome used a highly accurate technique for determining time of death, which measures potassium levels in the vitreous fluid of the eyes.

They established that Regeni died between 10pm on 1 February and 10pm on 2 February.

This is important because it means that he was alive for at least six or seven days and tortured repeatedly during that time.

Detailed analysis in Italy showed that he had been hit repeatedly on the head, but that these blows were not fatal. Blood had coagulated around the points where he had been hit, and other cuts, bruises and abrasions on his body showed different stages of healing.

This indicated that Regeni had been tortured more than once – and that days had passed between his initial torture, later sessions, and the moment of his death. He was covered with cuts and burns, and his hands and feet had been broken. Even his teeth were broken.”

His torturers appear to have carved letters into his flesh, a well-documented practice of the Egyptian police.”

This horrific story should not fade away. Whether or not Regeni was a spy — his friends and relatives do not believe he was — we do not know. But his horrific death demands an explanation.  Stay tuned.

UPDATE (January 26 2018) — According to Rome prosecutor Giuseppe Pignatone, Cambridge PhD student Giulio Regeni was killed because of his research on Egypt’s independent trade unions.

In a letter to Italy’s main newspapers, summarising the joint Italian-Egyptian investigation so far, Mr Pignatone said the motive for the killing could be “attributed solely” to Regeni’s research.

Mr Pignatone also said there were “evident contradictions” between statements from Cambridge University sources and the details that emerged from Regeni’s correspondence.

Egyptian police initially suggested he had been killed in a road accident. Authorities then said a criminal gang was responsible for his kidnapping and murder and that all its members were killed in a shootout – claims that were branded “implausible”.

Egyptian officials have admitted that he was being monitored. The topic he was researching — Egypt’s independent trade unions– is politically sensitive in the country. END of UPDATE

Is Egypt covering up the murder of an Italian student?

REFERENCES

Who murdered Giulio Regeni? — The Guardian

Murder of Giulio Regeni — Wikipedia

Giulio Regeni murdered in Egypt ‘over research’ – Italian prosecutor — BBC News (January 26 2018)

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Who Tortured Giulio Regeni to Death? And Why? [UPDATE]

Egypt — Who Tortured Giulio Regeni to Death? And Why?

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