Two men in Egypt were beaten, stripped half-naked and hung from a tree at a bus station by Egyptian vigilantes in a small Nile Delta town after they were accused of stealing a rickshaw.
This act, which came only a week after the attorney general’s office encouraged civilians to arrest lawbreakers and turn them into police, is easily considered one of the most extreme cases of vigilantism in the two years since Egypt’s 2011 uprising.
Ahram, the state-run newspaper, reported on its website that the two men were caught “red-handed” trying to steal a rickshaw and then dragged through the street. The website said they were alive before they were hung and that police were delayed from reaching the scene because residents had cut off road access as a way to protest the shortage of diesel fuel.
Graphic photographs from the scene show the two men, lying on the ground in their underwear, dead and covered in dirt, bruises, blood and lacerations. Angry men were gathered around them, one of who carried a knife and another who was holding a bloody wooden stick, according to CBS News.
Fox News reported that a photographer who witnessed the scene told AP that some in the crowd threatened to kill him if he took pictures of the lynchings with his camera. He also said women and children were present in a crowd of about 3,000 that stood by watching the killings, some of whom were chanting “kill them,” in support of the vigilantes.