Here’s is my eye witness account of the assault by CSF (Central Security Officers) officers on an unclothed protester Friday night at the presidential palace. I’m sure you’ve all seen the video, but please read this:
I was watching a heavily armed assault by Egypt’s Central Security Forces on retreating protesters fleeing into the side streets of Heliopolis, away from gun-wielding police who had now branched out on foot. The street lamps along Merghany Street were dim, but offered sufficient lighting from the balcony where I stood, a few floors above. Near Costa Cafe, out of the shadows, a pale figure caught my eye: a group of CSF huddled around what appeared to be a shirtless man, pushing, shoving and punching him. The man’s body fell to the ground — already partially unclothed, I’m not sure when and how the CSF had stripped him. Articles of clothing seemed to be down around his ankles.
The man was then dragged along the tarmac in a prone, seated position initially. When the CSF officer lost his grip on the man’s limb, he seized another and continued to pull the prostrate man face down along the ground. Hands outstretched, the naked figure was hauled by his ankles to a nearby armoured car several metres away. Without much visible or audible protests, the man was brought underneath a street lamp, where the group of CSF officers began to manhandle him, intermittently taking vicious jabs and swings with their truncheons at his crumpled figure on the ground. Having heard the officers’ bark orders at each other throughout the evening, the silence was striking: I distinctly remember not hearing or seeing a single officer make any attempt to intercede on the captured man’s behalf.
The man was eventually dragged towards the armoured car, kicked and shoved a few more times and then thrown inside. Minutes passed and then another armoured car drove up.
He was brought out and again forced to the ground. His hands went up, but helmeted riot policemen encircled him, continuing unabated in battering and knocking him about. The man appeared to entreat his captors for mercy, but he received only further physical abuse in response. An officer shouted a repeated command for the man to stand. The officer accompanied his words, however, by pushing the naked man along the ground and roughing him up even more.
This was the nature of the captured man’s treatment, until finally, he was forced into the second armoured car, which eventually drove away.
Amateur video of the beating appears below (warning: images may be disturbing for some viewers)