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Whereabouts of detained Egypt blogger unknown-Amnesty

world Updated: Feb 19, 2009 23:25 IST

Egyptian authorities have not disclosed the whereabouts of a blogger and activist who campaigns against Egypt's Gaza policy and was reported to have been detained this month, Amnesty International said.

Diaa Eddin Gad, 22, was detained on Feburary 6 outside his home in the Nile Delta province of Gharbiya by security men, Amnesty said in a statement on Thursday.

"He is believed to be held incommunicado in an unknown location, putting him at danger of torture," the London-based rights group said.

Inquiries by his lawyers and family have failed to locate Gad. Egypt normally reveals the location of detained activists to their families or lawyers within days.

Gad's blog Sawt Ghadib or "An Angry Voice", http://soutgadeb.blogspot.com, contains pro-Gaza slogans, news and commentary on Gaza, as well as strident denunciations of Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak and security services.

Egypt has been less tolerant of criticism of its Gaza policy since an Israeli offensive that ended on Jan. 18. This increased Egyptian public opposition to Cairo's participation in an Israeli-led blockade of the Hamas-run territory.

Authorities also detained a Egyptian-German activist who blogs on Gaza issues, Philip Rizk, this month. They released him after several days following an international outcry.

The Egyptian government is wary that public support for Gaza will boost the popularity of the Muslim Brotherhood, the strongest opposition group in the country, which has ideological and historical ties with Hamas.