Human Rights Unit
A brief description of the Human Rights Unit of the State Information Service
The State Information Service dedicated great efforts to positive interaction with the human rights situation in the Arab Republic of Egypt. This comes in light of SIS’s recognition of the importance and sensitivity of the historical phase Egypt is going through; it also comes in compliance with his Excellency President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi’s instructions to propagate human rights culture and reinforce its standing within Egyptian society within the context of upholding Egypt’s international obligations. SIS’s sheer interest in interacting with the human rights situation also stems from President El-Sisi’s clear instructions to all state institutions to create a transparent atmosphere marked by credibility to confront distortions and misconceptions that characterize the stances adopted by many International Human Rights NGOs and global media outlets on the human rights situation in Egypt.
In November 2017, the Council of Ministers approved the national comprehensive vision to uphold and protect human rights in Egypt, and the vision includes establishing a human rights unit in each ministry and governorate. Within this framework, Mr. Diaa Rashwan the Chairman of the State Information Service founded a human rights Unit at SIS in October 2018. The Unit is composed of predominantly young human rights experts, professional researchers and capable translators. The Unit is at the General Head Quarters of SIS in Nasr City in Cairo, and it is supervised directly by the Chairman of SIS.
Objectives of the Human Rights Unit
- Providing consultation to the Chairman of SIS on human rights issues.
- Issuing monthly analytical reports on the coverage of the human rights situation in Egypt by International Human Rights NGOs and Global Media Outlets.
- Scrutinizing reports and press releases issued by International Human Rights NGOs and Global Media outlets in order to assess the veracity of their content, and responding to any unfounded allegations in a professional manner based on facts.
- Preparing and issuing reports on human rights related subjects in coordination with the official competent authorities in an effort to confront systematic defamation campaigns in the name of human rights perpetrated by politicized entities.
- Playing an active role in raising awareness through introducing and spreading human rights notions in comprehensive terms in cooperation with the National Council for Human Rights. This takes place within the framework of the cooperation protocol signed between SIS and NCHR on 27/11/2017 that seeks to spread human rights culture and to uphold and protect human rights through undertaking joint activities to raise human rights awareness through utilizing all the capabilities of the 2 institutions.
Accomplishments of the Human Rights Unit
- The Unit has issued 5 editions of its monthly report “The state of human rights in Egypt ... The coverage of International organizations and the global media”
- Issuing a press release dismissing tweets posted by Human Rights Watch on the passing of Mohamed Morsi on 18/06/2019.
- Preparing and issuing a detailed response to allegations made by Human Rights Watch in its report on counterterrorism operations in the Sinai on 03/06/2019.
- Preparing and issuing a press release in response to allegations of subjecting children to enforced disappearance, torture and solitary confinement made by and Amnesty International in a report it released on 22/11/2018.
- Preparing and releasing a detailed response dismissing false allegations of torture and maltreatment of an Egyptian American Citizen named Khaled Hassan made by Human Rights Watch on 14/10/2018.
- Taking part in the 64th session of the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights in Sharm Al Sheikh and presenting a paper to the public documenting Egypt’s most important human rights achievements of the margins of the 64th
- Representing SIS at coordination meetings of members of the High Standing Committee for Human Rights that are hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Members of the Human Rights Unit
- Mohamed Osman – Head of the Human Rights Unit
- Mohamed Ali – Deputy Head of the Human Rights Unit
- Alaa Gomaa – Director the technical Office and a Researcher
- Sally Hassan – Researcher and English language Translator
- Dina Samra – Researcher
- Nermeen Medhat – Researcher
- Shrouk Diab – Researcher and Turkish language translator
- Soha Matar – Researcher and French language translator
- Abed Mohamed – Researcher