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Statement by the Tánaiste on the release of Halawa sisters in Egypt

Human rights, Press Releases, Middle East and North Africa, 2013

The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Eamon Gilmore T.D., today welcomed the imminent release of three of the Halawa siblings who have been detained in Egypt since August 17: 

“I am very pleased to hear that Somaia, Fatima and Omaima Halawa are to be released from detention in Egypt.

I telephoned Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy on Monday last to express my  concern that the Halawa siblings had been kept in prison for almost three months without being charged with an offence. 

I also expressed the Government’s hope and expectation that the situation would be brought to a satisfactory conclusion in the near future. 

Throughout their time in detention, our Embassy in Cairo has been in regular contact with them, visiting them in prison and providing consular assistance.

I have been informed that Ibrahim Halawa will attend a further hearing in Egypt on Saturday. My Department will continue to provide consular assistance to him and liaise with the Egyptian authorities on his ongoing detention without charge.”