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Omar Mohamed Ali of Egypt is among thousands of people unjustly detained. The #FreeToBeHome campaign is drawing attention to them and the families left behind. (Courtesy photo) Omar Mohamed Ali of Egypt is among thousands of people unjustly detained. The #FreeToBeHome campaign is drawing attention to them and the families left behind. (Courtesy photo)

Help shine a light on political prisoners who aren’t #FreeToBeHome

28 December 2016

Omar Mohamed Ali was arrested in Egypt in 2015 while having dinner with his fiancee. He was convicted of terrorist activity and sentenced to life in prison, although no evidence was ever presented against him.

“All people who knew Omar liked him,” Omar’s fiancee says. She called the past year and a half “the most horrible time in our lives.”

Khalil Maatouk, a Syrian lawyer who represented activists during that country’s uprising, disappeared on his way to work in 2012 and his family has not heard from him since. “I miss the confidence in myself he always gave me,” says his daughter.

Ali and Maatouk are among thousands of people around the world missing or unjustly imprisoned. Their families and friends worry about their safety and plead for their release.

Since Human Rights Day, U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power and the U.S. Mission to the U.N. have been publishing daily profiles of political prisoners and sharing their stories through social media using the hashtag #FreeToBeHome.

“Unjust imprisonment of individuals on the basis of their beliefs, political affiliation or speech cannot be tolerated,” Power said in a new video. Join her in calling for the release of all political prisoners.

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