An Egyptian Christian who was arrested in Libya and charged with proselytizing has died after being tortured by his captors, according to a report.
Ezzat Hakim Atallah, who was one of dozens of Egyptian Copts arrested last month in Benghazi, was awaiting a court appearance in Tripoli when his family learned he had died. He had been held by the Libyan Preventive Security since Feb. 25, and had been hospitalized March 6 before being brought back to a cell, according to family members.
Effat Hakim Atallah, the victim’s brother, told MidEast Christian News his brother was originally arrested Feb. 13 while he was at his job in a mobile phone shop in Benghazi. Several Egyptian merchants from a surrounding market were also arrested, allegedly because their stalls were adorned with Christian symbols, according to witnesses.
Atallah’s wife was able to visit him three days after his arrest and found him in a state of severe fatigue and with bruises and cuts, according to Effat Hakim Atallah. At that time, he said he had already been subjected to physical and psychological torture in a bid to force a confession from him, he said.