Fifty lawyers and the head of the Egyptian Union for Human Rights Naguib Gobrail submitted on Sunday a petition to general prosecutor Nabil Sadek in which they called for the reopening of investigations in the case of the “Coptic Minya woman.”
According to state-run newspaper Akhbar Al-Youm, the petition asked for the cancellation of the decision issued by the Minya prosecution to suspend the case and to reopen investigations in it to achieve justice.
Two weeks ago, head of the Lawyers Syndicate Sameh Ashour ordered members of the defence team of the Coptic woman to get an official copy of the case’s suspension decision, according to a statement issued from Ashour’s office.
The statement asserted that Ashour needs a copy of the prosecution’s decision to appeal against it and save the case.
Recently, several local media reports indicated that the prosecution decided to suspend the case of 70-year-old Souad Thabet known in media as “Coptic Minya woman”, who was forced out of her home by an angry mob, dragged in the street, beaten, and had her clothes ripped off in May 2015, according to a statement by the archbishop Makarius of Minya.
The incident began when a rumour about an alleged affair between Thabet’s son, Ashraf, and a Muslim woman sparked tensions in Al-Karam village in Minya, leading to threats against Ashraf who subsequently left the village. A group of roughly more than 200 people later looted and torched at least seven homes belonging to Coptic families, according to a statement issued then by the archbishop.
Following the incident, President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi had instructed respective authorities to hold those responsible for the incidents accountable. He also instructed the Minya governor to coordinate with the armed forces to restore the damaged buildings in the incident within a month, adding that the state will pay for the expenses.