Protest at State Department to Release Egyptian-American Mohamed Soltan and Stop US Military Aid to Egypt


May 5, 2014

Contact: Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK Co-founder, 415 235 6517,

Alli McCracken, CODEPINK Organizer, 860 575 5692,

Protest at State Department to Release Egyptian-American Mohamed Soltan and Stop US Military Aid to Egypt

Where: In front of the US State Department (2201 C Street NW, Washington DC)

When: 12:00 noon, Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Visuals: Activists with banners against military aid to Egypt, face masks of Soltan, signs around neck reading “I am Mohamed Soltan”

Washington, DC –– CODEPINK and Egyptian Americans for Democracy and Human Rights will stage a protest in front of the State Department at noon on Tuesday, May 6. Activists will call on the US government not to release military funds to Egypt that had been blocked after the coup, and to help Mohamed Soltan, an Egyptian-American recently profiled in the Washington Post who will be on day 100 of a hunger strike in an Egyptian prison.

The US State Department has failed to provide meaningful assistance for Soltan, who has never been charged with a crime. Now, with his prolonged hunger strike, his life is at risk. "Our family is deeply concerned about the level of medical neglect Mohamed faces in Egyptian prisons, the inhumane conditions he is being kept in, and the US government’s negligence” says Mohamed’s brother Omar Soltan. “My brother was involved in civilian journalism, which is not a crime. But Mohamed is paying with his life for his belief in the American values of democracy and freedom of expression." His trial has been postponed over and over again and there is no set date for him to go to court.

Since overthrowing the Morsi government in July 2013, the Egyptian military has killed over 1,000 people and jailed over 20,000, and it is clear that Soltan’s arrest was politically motivated. Despite these clear human rights abuses, the US continues to send Apache helicopters to the Egyptian military and Secretary Kerry is pushing for the resumption of $650 million dollars in military aid.

“It is outrageous that our US tax dollars are being sent to the illegitimate Egyptian government established by a coup,” said CODEPINK co-founder Medea Benjamin. “The US should immediately stop all aid to Egypt until a real democratic process has actually been established.”