Despite this very significant development, some voices in the media remain inexplicably determined to point fingers at Giulio’s supervisor, Dr Maha Abdelrahman. Press reports have rehashed old and baseless assertions that she did not cooperate with the original investigation. These are malicious and defamatory accusations, with no basis in evidence. A full account of Dr Abdelrahman’s record of collaborations with the investigators can be found in
our earlier statements
Press reports continue to misrepresent the nature of the relationship between Giulio and Dr Abdelrahman. This demonstrates a fundamental – and continued – lack of understanding about the nature of academic research, and about the intellectual relationship between PhD students and their supervisors, which is one of support, critique and advice rather than instruction. He was an experienced researcher, with experience of field work in Egypt, working on legal independent trade unions that were also being researched by many others at the time.
This latest round of misinformation has triggered unjust and unjustified vilification of an honourable scholar. It has led to harassment and threats. The reiteration of such damaging insinuations is scurrilous and irresponsible.
The University of Cambridge welcomes the move by Italian prosecutors to charge four individuals directly connected with Giulio’s disappearance, torture and death. We stand with Giulio’s family, friends and colleagues in the search for justice and truth.
Prof Stephen J Toope