Italy’s Foreign Minister has confirmed Rome will collaborate with Cairo in an investigation into the death of twenty-eight-year-old student Giulio Regeni.
His half-naked body was found at the side of a road on the outskirts of Cairo. Cigarette burns, cuts and other signs of torture suggesting a ‘slow death’ were evident on his body, a senior Egyptian prosecutor said.
This appears to contradict the findings of a senior Egyptian investigator who has been quoted ruling out foul play in relation to the death, suggesting instead he may have been involved in a road accident.
Regeni disappeared on January 25, 2016, the date of the fifth anniversary of the uprising which ended Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year rule.
Italian media reports the student was collaborating with workers’ movements and independent trade unions in Cairo and had contacts with the Egyptian opposition. He is said to have been sending articles under a pseudonym to Italy’s self-styled Communist newspaper Il Manifesto. An Italian journalist told the press Regeni had been afraid to sign his real name.
Italian authorities are reported to be pushing for his remains to be returned to Italy as soon as possible.
The Egyptian ambassador has been summoned to Italy’s foreign ministry in Rome. It says it expects “maximum collaboration at all levels, in light of the exceptional gravity of what happened.”