Okeil: The victims are the human dimension of terrorism and their memory must be immortalized
Fawky: 1,216 terrorist incidents have killed 2,965 people, including women and children
The Policy Analysis Unit at Maat for Peace, Development and Human Rights released a new study entitled “An Expensive Retreat: The Outcome of Eight Years of Terrorism in Egypt”, on the International Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism, which is observed every year on August 21, and was established by the United Nations General Assembly to honor and support victims and survivors of terrorism and to promote and protect their full enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms.
Maat has took this occasion to remind and warn that some partners in humanity are deprived of the basic requirements of a normal life; that is security, stability and tranquility due to the ongoing terrorist attacks targeting them, which calls for immediate action. Victims of violence struggle to make their voices heard and their needs met, and usually feel neglected as soon as the immediate impact of terrorist attacks fades, which has dire consequences on them.
The report emphasized that the UN system and human rights contexts remained unable to keep pace with this destructive phenomenon, and its tools remained insufficient to pursue these organizations or hold accountable those who support them and benefit from their presence. In the context of the war on terrorism on the one hand, and the demands to develop the war on terrorism in terms of protecting the right to life and the right to development on the other, the international system found itself stuck in an unenviable position, whereas the bloodshed did not stop, amid international impotence and clear shortcomings.
With regard to Egypt, the study revealed that 59% of the total terrorist operations mainly targeted the army, police, security and military institutions, while 33% of the total terrorist operations targeted civilians as well as public and private facilities. 7% of the total incidents of terrorism targeted Copts and their religious and private facilities, and assassinations constituted the remaining 1%.
According to the study, not a single Egyptian governorate escaped the crossfire of terrorist groups. All governorates witnessed violence and terrorism during the study period, while the majority of terrorist operations were concentrated in about 5 governorates, namely "North Sinai, Cairo, Giza, Fayoum, Minya" with 947 out of 1,216 operations, that is 78% of the total incidents of violence and terrorism. The governorates of "Aswan, New Valley, Marsa Matruh" came at the bottom of the list of governorates in terms of the number of terrorist incidents, as the governorates collectively recorded only 8 terrorist attacks. North Sinai topped the most violent governorates with 683 terrorist attacks, 56% of the total terrorist operations, followed by Cairo with 94 terrorist incidents, 8%, Giza with 91 terrorist attacks, and Fayoum ranked fourth with 40 terrorist incidents, 3%. Finally, Minya Governorate recorded 39 terrorist incidents, at a rate of 3%.
For his part, Ayman Okeil, president of Maat, stressed that terrorist operations in all its forms and manifestations aim at undermining human rights and fundamental freedoms, especially the right to life, the foundation upon which all rights are based. He pointed out that terrorism is no longer a local crime that can be controlled and limited within specific geographical frameworks, but rather has crossed borders and geographical barriers, and therefore the international community should take the necessary steps to enhance cooperation in order to prevent and combat terrorism. Okeil added that the victims represent the "human dimension of terrorism", and that the International Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terror is an opportunity to honor and commemorate these victims around the world.
Eslam Fawky, director of the Policy Analysis Unit at Maat, explained that the bloodiest wave of violence in Egypt's history was the one that followed the Brotherhood's departure from power, which lasted for several years before the state finally succeeded in reducing it significantly. Fawky revealed that 1216 terrorist incidents had occurred, resulting in the death and injury of about ten thousand six hundred and sixty-three victims. Among the 2,965 killings recorded, 1,201 were killed from army forces and police, and 1,764 from civilians. On the other hand, 7,698 cases of injuries were recorded, with 1702 injuries among the army and police forces, and about 5,996 injuries among civilians.