Citizens often send messages to the President of the European Parliament (or to the institution’s public portal) expressing their views on current issues and/or requesting action from the Parliament. The Citizens’ Enquiries Unit (AskEP) within the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS) looks into these issues and replies to the messages, which may sometimes be identical as part of wider public campaigns.
The President of the European Parliament has recently received a large number of messages calling on the Parliament to put pressure on the Egyptian government for the immediate release of Patrick Zaky, an Egyptian human rights advocate and researcher who was studying for a master’s degree on gender and human rights in Bologna. Arrested upon arrival at Cairo airport on 7 February 2020, Zaky was detained by the Egyptian authorities on charges including ‘disseminating false news’, ‘inciting to protest’ and ‘incitement to violence and terrorist crimes’. Citizens first began to write to the President on this subject in February 2020. The President of the European Parliament David Maria Sassoli issued a statement in which he called for the immediate release of Patrick Zaky.
Please find below the main points of the reply sent to citizens who took the time to write to the President of the European Parliament on this matter (in English and in Italian).
Main points made in the reply in English
We would like to inform you that on 12 February 2020, President Sassoli issued a statement in which he called for Patrick Zaky, the Egyptian student who had been studying in Bologna and who was detained in Cairo, to be released immediately, returned to his loved ones and allowed to resume his studies.
You may also view the relevant video of the President if you wish to do so (video).
Main points made in the reply in Italian
La informiamo che il Presidente Sassoli ha rilasciato una dichiarazione il 12 febbraio 2020 in cui ha chiesto che Patrick Zaky, lo studente egiziano di Bologna detenuto al Cairo, venga immediatamente rilasciato e restituito all’affetto dei suoi cari ed ai suoi studi.
Se lo desidera, può altresì consultare il video afferente del Presidente.