On Admitting Michael Nabil to a Mental Hospital
I have to highlight how important it is that Michael Nabil is not a suspect in a violent crime. The military courts are trying him over a blog post that criticises the army, not killing or stabbing anyone.
Michael has passed the 50 days mark in his hunger strike.
He was referred to a mental hospital for observation for 45 days when his court appointed lawyers defended him saying that he is suffering from mental problems.
This is outrageous because:
- It politicises psychiatry,
- He isn't a suspect in a violent crime,
- Are we heading towards a society where someone who disagrees with the ruling class is stripped of his freedom and his mental/psychiatric conditions 'checked'?
- The hospital may get itself involved in involuntarily breaking his hunger strike.
The Abbaseya mental Hospital should have refused taking Michael Nabil in.
Without delving into the conditions of his stay inside the criminal suspects wards. This is abuse by the military court, which the Hospital has just become a partner in.
Today the media department of the General Secretariat of Mental Health released the following statement. Here is a snippet.
The referral of political activists and crimes of conscience to mental hospitals claiming to assess their mental condition is a dangerous and unacceptable affair and brings to memory dark periods of the history of humanity when opponents to the political and social system were incarcerated in mental hospitals with the aim of isolating them from society and stigmatizing them and consequently ridiculing their opinions and views, even after proven mentally health. The incarceration of an individual whose charge is having a different view of the situation in the country is morally and professionally unacceptable. Sanad is kept in one ward with others accused of criminal charges, a matter that is involves terrorizing and threat.
UPDATE: The Health ministry spokesperson, who turned out to be an engineer and was appointed in this position 6 days ago, said on live TV that Michael Nabil didn't enter the Abbasseya mental hospital and that Dr. Basma Abdel Aziz, the head of the media department in the General Secretariat of Mental Health, who released the above statement, will be administratively questioned about it.
This is despite several doctors in the hospital saying that they saw Michael Nabil and know that he has been interviewed by psychiatrists and will be discharged and given a report soon.
Several colleagues of Dr. Basma protested the spokesperson remarks and they distributed leaflets and held signs against using the mental hospital against political dissidents. Chanting the hospital is for the patient and not a tool in the hands of the jailer. Several members of the newly elected medical syndicate board attended the protest and other prominent psychiatrists.