UK government FINALLY responds to the murder of Giulio Regeni

“We are appalled by Giulio Regeni’s murder.”

Cambridge egypt FCO foreign and commonwealth office girton college giulio regeni investigation Italy murder police UK government whereisgiulio

The UK government has finally issued a statement on the Giulio Regeni murder after public demand stepped up. 

Following the murder of Cambridge PhD student Giulio Regeni in February whilst conducting his research in Egypt on Trade Unions, the UK government has finally responded to demands for a statement.

In recent weeks pressure has risen across the country with a petition being launched to demand a statement from the UK government, and with particular involvement in Cambridge. CUSU called for a ‘complete and full’ investigation into his death, whilst a rally held on Friday drew further attention to the issue.

The government responded to the pressure and finally issued a statement

The statement, issued by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, began by confirming that they are ‘appalled’ by the murder and that they have offered support to Italy along with drawing attention to ‘the need for a full and transparent investigation with Egypt.’

However, the statement also maintained that since Mr Regeni was an Italian national, the leading efforts of the investigation have been made by the Italian government and attempted to coordinate their actions in order to ensure that UK intervention in the process does not ‘inhibit or complicate their engagement with the Egyptian authorities on the investigation.’

Credit: Luke Naylor-Perrott

The rest of the statement served to detail the actions that Britain had performed in the case, in response to the allegations that were coming firstly from the academic community, and later from the nation as a whole as people became increasingly concerned with the lack of progress in the case.

The FCO have expressed their ‘disappointment’ and ‘concern’ at the lack of development in the case, and expressed worries that Egypt is not cooperating as fully as they should be in the case. It also drew attention to the allegations that the murder was performed by Egyptian security forces. Whilst it did express that these indeed were ‘unproven’, it also elaborated that every possible scenario should be explored.

Credit: Luke Naylor-Perrott

Since the release of this statement, it has also emerged that the Egyptian authorities have launched investigations into the Reuters journalist who published the story that revealed Regeni was held by Egyptian authorities before his death, a move that has been severely criticised by press freedom groups.

It is clear, however, that the lack of progress that has characterised this case is set to continue.

The British government has spoken out, but is speech without action really enough?