Infant - Creative Commons via liefiekindphotography
CAIRO - 29 March: A 3-month-old boy is dead and his father in custody and under investigation for torturing the boy,
The father reportedly slapped and bit his son to stop his crying before immersing him in water.
According to testimony from the infant’s mother, the father, from Manshiyat Naser district in Cairo, dangled his son from a ceiling fan and immersed him in a bucket of cold water.
“I have been married year and a half, during which [time] I lived in hell with my husband, who used to assault me nearly every day,” the bereaved mother told investigators.
Three days before she lost her baby, the mother said she left to prepare lunch per her husband’s orders, and he took their crying child, slapped him on the face “horribly” and put him in a bucket of water.
Baby used to immersed in a bucket of water - YOUM7
“When I tried to stop him, he threatened me with a knife until our neighbors interfered,” she said.
The mother took the baby to the hospital, but he was not well, she said. “I had not seen my son this way anytime before. He looked strange, stared at the ceiling with his eyes opened and did not sleep. He did not even cry until he died in my arms.”
A rope tied to ceiling fan where the baby used to be dangled -YOUM7
The defendant justified his abuse of the baby by saying he “want[ed] to make him stronger” every time he placed him in cold water or hung him from the fan with a rope, according to testimony from relatives.
The grandfather corroborated the mother’s story, telling investigators his son used to abuse the baby.
An autopsy of the baby’s body revealed he was bitten, had swollen eyes and bruises in his face and back.
The father will be detained for four days pending investigations into accusations of torturing his infant to death.
Last week the story of an 18-month-old girl who was raped by a 36-year-old man made headlines in Egypt, as calls to hang the defendant echoed in most media reports.
Identified as Ibrahim, the perpetrator admitted he kidnapped the victim and raped her with his finger, causing severe bleeding, according to local media reports. The baby was taken to hospital where she was rescued, while the man was arrested amid protests demanding to sentence him to death for his crime.
Last June, a total of 377 children faced different types of abuse in 225 different cases of violations ranging from kidnapping to drowning to rape, according to a report by the Egyptian Foundation for Advancement of Childhood Conditions (EFACC).
The report said 32 percent of the victims abused were females, while 58 percent were male.
Additional Reporting by Youm7 reporters Ahmed Ismail and Karim Sobhy