Education International
Education International

Italian researcher’s death in Egypt spurs calls for inquiry

published 15 February 2016 updated 18 February 2016

Teachers’ unions in Italy are urging Egyptian authorities to launch a full investigation into the death of Giulio Regeni, who was murdered while publishing articles on trade union rights, and who’s death remains a mystery.

Nearly two weeks after the body of Cambridge PhD student Giulio Regeni was found in Cairo, few clues to why he was murdered have surfaced, though a coroner’s report has confirmed that the 28-year-old Italian had been tortured during the days leading up to his death.

Although he was studying economics, the sensitivity of Regeni’s other interests, which focused on trade union rights and labour issues, and specifically on Egyptian labour unions, has led to Education International (EI)’s three Italian affiliates searching for answers. The federations CISL, UIL, and CGIL are pressuring the Italian government push the Egyptians to open an inquiry.

Education International has also sent a letter to the Egyptian authorities to request a full investigation.

“Italy has the right to know the truth by the Egyptian authorities on the tragic death of Giulio Regeni. We are all very saddened and affected. Giulio could be one of our sons,” said CISL General Secretary Annamaria Furlan.

In expressing its sympathy to Regeni’s family, the UIL made clear in a statement that the Egyptian authorities “must undertake and reinforce the respect of human and civil rights and ensure a decent level of economic and social security for the entire population” and “must quickly clarify what happened.”

Echoing its fellow unions, the FLC-CGIL have publically asked Italian authorities to exert “maximum efforts to shed light on what happened,” and have called for a “transparent investigation.”

In addition to his writing focused on trade union rights, Regeni, who published under a pseudonym, was also close to movements aimed at liberating North Africa from interference and dictatorships.

You can support the LabourStart campaign calling for an independent investigation into Regini's death here