CEU President Ignatieff Calls for Immediate Release of Ahmed Samir Santawy

February 4, 2021

Statement on Egyptian student from CEU detained in Cairo

Ahmed Samir Abdelhay Ali, an Egyptian student who is pursuing his Master's degree at Central European University in Vienna was detained by the police in Egypt on February 1, 2021.

Ahmed, a student in the 2-year MA in Sociology/Social Anthropology program, returned to Egypt for the winter break. Interrogated at Sharm El Sheikh International Airport upon his arrival, Ahmed was then allowed to leave and be with his family. When he returned to Cairo on February 1, Ahmed voluntarily presented himself to the fifth district's police station, as requested by the authorities, whereupon he was detained.

There are no charges brought against Ahmed, and I call for his immediate release and for his safe return to his family and to his studies.

Michael Ignatieff
Rector and President
Central European University