VFP Statement on Attack by Egyptian Police on Medea Benjamin

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3/6/2014

Veterans For Peace are appalled that Medea Benjamin, co-founder of Code Pink, a U.S. citizen, and member of Veterans For Peace has been brutally attacked and injured by Egyptian police as she entered Egypt to join an international women's peace delegation to Gaza. Medea’s arm was fractured by five Egyptian police officers and her shoulder dislocated as they threw her to the ground and handcuffed her after being detained for 7 hours along with four others with no reason given - ever.

Calling from Istanbul, Benjamin gave the following statement: “I was brutally assaulted by Egyptian police, who never said what I was being accused of. When the authorities came into the cell to deport me, two men threw me to the ground, stomped on my back, pulled my shoulder out of its socket and handcuffed me so that my injured arm was twisted around. I was then forced to sit between the two men who attacked me on the plane ride from Cairo to Istanbul, and I was (and still am) in terrible pain the whole time.”

Equally deplorable, is the failure of the U.S. Embassy to provide any assistance whatsoever even after being called repeatedly to at least help get Medea medical care. They told U.S. citizens, the women from the delegation, "You are on your own."

We condemn this action by the Egyptian government through their police and equally condemns the U.S. State Department for their complicity through inaction. We urge everyone to call and/or email the Egyptian Embassy at 202 895-5400 and Embassy@egyptembassy.net to voice your outrage and demand that those accountable be held responsible. Ask for justice for Medea, that they release the delegation from the airport and let them go to Gaza, and stop cracking down on journalists and Egyptian activists.

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