Interviews with the family of soldier killed by RPG in Sinai
00:00-01:23 Dear Mr. Prosecutor, Arish District, with greetings and respect to you,
I would like to inform you that we went out at 6 in the evening on the 2nd of May in order to examine the body of the deceased, Mahmoud Sabry Mohammad Abdallah, and we determined that the death of the deceased occurred as a result of the splinters and fragments that was scattered all over the body, which was caused by explosive firearms resulting in scattered splinters and fragments all over the body of the deseased, causing him cardiorrhexis and serious heart and chest bleeding.
Dr. Imad Al-Din Mohammad Shahat,
Head of the medical forensic in Sinai.
This is Mahmoud’s forensic report, and this is a copy of his death certificate stating that the cause of the death is chest disruptions by an artillery shell.
This is Mahmoud’s Burial license, stating that the death was caused by chest and heart disruptions by an artillery shell.
01:23-01:34 Uncle Bakar, went to God, in Heaven.
01:34-02:03 I am his sister, and he used to live with me. We live here in downtown and we’re born here. Mahmoud went to school until the 2nd year of elementary and he didn’t finish his studies due to our circumstances, and he worked in a printing house for a few months and then he started working with Mr. Hamdy in his Cafeteria.
02:12-02:21 He used to work in a printing house and then he came to work with us here. He didn’t really like the printing job so, he came to work with us here in the Cafeteria. He went to do his military service.
02:21-02:39 he was placed in the Center Security Forces and then he was sent to north Sinai, in Rafah, at the beginning of his service which is 3 years. He only had 6 months left to finish his military service when he died.
02:39-02:59 he was unfortunate to be sent to that place, he used to come for holidays and worked with us, just like before he joined the military. He used to come on his holiday, take his first day off and then started working on the next day. He died on the 1st of May at 12 a.m. we knew about his death at 5 a.m.
03:00-04:21 on Wednesday at 4 a.m. at dawn, he used to take his Sim card with him and he put my number and the number of my husband, Emad on speed dial in case something happened to him. I found him calling me, so I answered, thinking it was him, I told him Are you staying up late to call and joke at this hour? So I found someone else’s voice telling me, I’m not Mahmoud, and asked, Are you a related to Mahmoud Sabry Mohammad Abdallah? I answered: yes, I’m his sister. I asked him impulsively: Is Mahmoud injured? Did something happen to him? He told me that it was bigger than that and that you can consider him a martyr now, and that he died. I was stunned by the news, I couldn’t believe it at first, I thought someone was joking or something and then his phone was switched off. They said it will be in the news, after that in was in the news with his name, Soldier, Mahmoud Sabry Abdallah, died. We knew the news about his death was real after we watched the news but we didn’t receive any official notice of his death.
04:22-04:48 it was at 8 a.m. when we knew for sure that Mahmoud was dead. At the time, from 8 a.m. till 3 a.m., the next day, we were very worried and we couldn’t reach him so, we got a call from his friend telling us not to go as they were working on the procedures then.
04:48-05:22 they waited for the medical forensic, who arrived at 6 p.m. and he died at 12 p.m. on Tuesday, and the medical forensic arrived at 6 p.m. on Wednesday. After all these procedures, his body arrived here at 1 a.m., they brought him in an ambulance and there was a delegate who accompanied his body.
05:29-05:52 he was in his grave clothes when he got here and they put him in a sack and then wrapped him with his grave clothes, cause of his severe injuries. We received his body in the police mosque. By the time, they arrived, all mosques were closed so we couldn’t pray for him.
05:52-06:38 I felt as if they were throwing him away as if he was not a human being. As if they were telling us take this body that was wrapped in a white cloth and throw it away or bury him or do whatever you want with it. Since then, I feel really bad and I don’t know what to do. We received our son’s body in an ambulance and he died and his blood was all over the sand and tank. Allah is sufficient for us, and how fine a trustee He is. They could’ve called the mosque and asked them to open it, I would’ve felt better and I wouldn’t be talking like this now. I would’ve considered him a martyr, but after what they did. I will get my son Mahmoud’s right even if I have to give up my life.
06:39-07:00 I felt bad that they gave the soldier who died in Abbaseyya clashes more attention, they prayed for him, Al Mosheer Tantawi was there in his funeral and the governor and many others. Unlike Mahmoud, they dropped him off and left.
07:00-08:03 My name is Ahmad Mohammad Ahmad, I’ve been working here for 4 years now, Bakar, is from the best people I worked with, may he rest in peace, Mahmoud Sabry would never be substituted. I couldn’t believe what happened and I was hoping that it was someone else who died, and I was waiting to see Bakar, coming towards me anytime, and would come back and work with us again. I thought maybe they mixed him up with someone else. I can’t believe what happened so far and I feel sometimes that I might see him coming towards me anytime again. They should’ve honored him, I’m not asking them to make him a military funeral, but at least bring his body back by a plan or something, if he was a police officer, they would’ve brought him back by a plane. We received his body at 2 a.m. and they brought him by a regular car, he deserves better than that, he is considered a martyr. The military of interior affairs doesn’t treat all offices in the same way.
08-03-09:43 Mahmoud was not given his rights, we didn’t receive any official notice about his death from the military of interior affairs and we didn’t receive any official condolences from them. As a soldier, they should’ve sent us an official notice or report his death to the police station here and then they send it to us officially. We didn’t receive any official document of his death. If it wasn’t for the phone call I got, I wouldn’t have known about my brother’s death. On his last visit, Mahmoud told me that they were being shot at every day, and that they hear firing every day, he told me he was scared and he didn’t want to go back. We used to tell him, No, you need to finish your military service, if you didn’t go, and who else will take your position there? Who will defend our country if you all returned? We kept encouraging him to return back there, telling him that he only got 5 months left to finish. He was going back and forth, worried and he didn’t want to go back, he told me every time I go there I take my grave clothes with me, and that he felt that he wouldn’t come back from there.
09:43-13:09 My name is Ahmad Mohammad Osman, from Monofiya, Mahmoud was my friend and he was doing his military service for 3 years, I heard about his death at dawn and we had a fight to go to him in the hospital. We stayed there and we finished all the procedures. I wasn’t there when the accident happened but I heard that an RPG was shot at the tank and Mahmoud was in it, sitting by the driver who was driving the tank, suddenly the lights went out and the RPG was shot. His body was washed in the hospital and he was wrapped in grave clothes and he was taken by an ambulance, they sent a delegate, not an officer with us. He finished the procedures with us. And they sent him in an ambulance through Salah Salem highway to take his body to his family and we took him to the cemetery right away and we couldn’t find a mosque to pray for him, so we made tayammum in the graveyard and prayed for him and buried him. We demand that they treat soldiers of the military of interior affairs as good as they treat the soldiers of Armed forces. If a soldier in the Armed forces is killed, God forbid, they make him a military funeral and they honor him and he gets all his rights. We are soldiers just like them and we are all human, we all serve this country, so we are supposed to take our right as well, like them.