To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made to the government of Egypt about the number of death sentences issued in that country since July 2013; and what responses, if any, they have received.
15 July 2015
It is the long-standing policy of the British Government to oppose the death penalty in all circumstances. We have regularly raised our concerns about the death sentences issued in Egypt at both Ministerial and official level. On 17 May the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my hon. Friend the Member for Bournemouth East (Mr Ellwood), raised our concerns with the Egyptian Ambassador in London over the sentencing to death of former President Morsi and more than 100 others, and made a press statement on the matter. On 2 April the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), raised his strong concern with the Egyptian Foreign Minister over death sentences imposed on 529 people, and on 28 April he made a press statement expressing deep concern that a further 683 people had been sentenced to death by the same court. In May the Foreign Secretary raised his concerns again with the Egyptian Foreign Minister in London.
In our conversations with the Egyptian government we have emphasised that it is vital that any judicial decisions are objective, transparent and in accordance with the law. We are aware that there are further stages in the legal processes and that retrials have been ordered in some of the cases. We continue to follow these cases closely and remain in contact with the Egyptian authorities.