Egypt 'Fabricated Terror Group'

December 11, 2007

Author: Staff Writer

Source: BBC News

A US-based human rights group has accused the Egyptian government of using torture and false confessions in a high-profile anti-terrorism case.

Twenty-two alleged members of an unknown Islamist group, the Victorious Sect, were accused of planning attacks on tourism sites and gas pipelines.

Human Rights Watch says its research suggests the security forces may have fabricated the group's name.

It reports claims the case was used to justify renewing emergency laws.

Although the state prosecutor dismissed the charges against the suspects, 10 of them are still believed to be in detention.

The BBC's Ian Pannell in Cairo says this is just the latest in a run of accusations by human rights organisations against Egypt's police and state security apparatus.

The Egyptian government has consistently denied that torture is used routinely and rejected what it sees as foreign interference in its own affairs.