The first of the two-days meeting between the delegation of Egyptian and Italian prosecutors has begun today in the headquarters of Criminalpol Anagnina, to shed light on the death of Giulio Regeni, whose body with marks of long torture was found in obscure circumstances on 3 February in Cairo, where the young university researcher was carrying out his studies. The Alitalia flight 897 from the Egyptian capital, with the delegation onboard, has landed shortly before 8 p.m. last night at Fiumicino airport.
Egypt’s Interior Ministry has prepared a dossier, to be delivered to the public prosecutor of Rome Giuseppe Pignatone, the prosecutor Sergio Colaiocco and to other Italian safety delegates. According to Egyptian sources from the local newspaper Akhbar el-Yom published in the last few days, among the “hypotheses” of the prosecutors from Cairo, responsibility is attributed to the diverted Secret Service, with the purpose of creating embarrassment in the international relations of President al-Sisi. In an interview with a local television station, the Egyptian Interior Minister said that “this case has to end the way it is supposed to: Italian and Egyptian authorities have to work together, so as to curb the crisis”.
The Egyptian government has put forward many reconstructions of that dreadful day when Regeni’s body was found; among these, some of which are “imaginative”, such as passionate motifs or even a possible obscure involvement of the young man in illegal businesses, such as illegal trafficking of works of art. But the involvement of the Egyptian security apparatuses in this horrible crime seems to be no longer concealable.
“We will stop only when the truth – the real one, not the comfortable truth – comes out,” Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni wrote in his urgent informative report to the Parliament on Tuesday, 5 April. Gentiloni also said that today’s bilateral security meeting “might prove decisive.”
Some authoritative sources revealed that Giulio Regeni worked as an analyst of Intelligence undercover, recruited from among civilians, in an Italian-American-British triangulation. “Giulio Regeni was a top-level agent, not just a co-worker,” investigative reporter Mark Gregory wrote on his blog on February 14, 2016.
According to anonymous sources from the Egyptian police, which communicate with the newspaper La Repubblica via email, General Khaled Shalabi, head of the Egyptian Criminal Police, is the one responsible for the torture and assassination of the brilliant young scholar. To attest to their credibility, they told also gruesome details of his torture, known only to our judges and prosecutors and ignored by the public.
An anonymous who claims to be from the Egyptian secret police has been writing to La Repubblica in the last few days, accusing the Egyptian leadership and revealing details of the torture inflicted on Giulio Regeni which have never been spread and were known only by the Italian prosecutors. The emails reached the prosecutors in Rome.
“The order to seize Giulio Regeni – writes the anonymous – was given by General Khaled Shalabi, head of the Criminal Police and Investigation Department of Giza. Before the kidnapping, Shalabi put Regeni’s house and movements under control and asked to search his apartment together with officers of the National Security. On 25 January, immediately after the kidnapping, Shalabi detained Regeni in the district of Giza, in the security headquarters for 24 hours”. In the barracks of Giza, Giulio “is deprived of his mobile phone and of his documents and, in front of the refusal to answer any question in the absence of a translator and that of a representative of the Italian Embassy, they beat him up.” The questioners “want to know the network of his contacts with the leaders of the Egyptian workers and the next steps they are preparing.” Thus, “upon the order of the Interior Minister Magdy Abdel Ghaffar”, on 26 or 27 January “he is transferred to a headquarters of the National Security in Nasr City”. After three days of torture, Interior Minister decides to refer the matter to “the presidential adviser, General Ahmad Jamal ad-Din, who, once al-Sisi is informed, orders the student’s transfer to a seat of the Services military intelligence in Nasr City, where he was to be questioned.” There, they tortured him inhumanly – says the anonymous source at the newspaper – until he died. “They put him in the cold room of Kobri to Qubba military hospital, under close supervision, waiting for the decision on what to do with the body. The decision was taken at a meeting between al-Sisi, the Interior Minister, the heads of the two intelligence services, the head of the Presidency and the Cabinet Councillor for National Security Fayza Abu al Naja “. During the meeting – according to the email – “they decided to make the story look like a crime of homosexual nature, whose purpose was robbery, and abandon the body (naked from the waist down) on the side of a road. Then, nighttime, the body was transferred from the Kobri military hospital in an ambulance escorted by the Secret Service and left on the Cairo-Alexandria road.”
“They wanted to get rid of Giulio in the desert,” reads the last anonymous email to La Repubblica. The emails written by the anonymous seem to contain “numerous inaccuracies in reconstructing facts, especially with regard to the post-mortem examinations”, according to prosecutors. Hence, “they will not even be considered,” because that is what the Italian criminal procedure pertaining to anonymous communications establishes.
According to Egyptian media, the name Egypt is ready to “sacrifice” to buck Regeni’s death is that of the general Shalabi, the top official of the National Security in charge of Regeni’s case, “who was already condemned in 2003 by a court in Alexandria for torturing a man to death and falsifying police reports, but reinstated after the suspension of the sentence.”