The White House says President Joe Biden will attend the COP27 U.N. climate summit in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, on November 11 as part of a larger overseas trip that will also take him to Cambodia and Indonesia. Biden’s trip comes as human rights defenders continue to urge the release of all political prisoners in Egypt ahead of the climate summit. Among them is human rights activist Alaa Abd El-Fattah, who has been on hunger strike for over 200 days protesting the horrific conditions he faces in an Egyptian jail. His sister and human rights advocate Mona Seif said on social media her brother is stopping his 100-calorie daily intake and will also begin a water strike starting this Sunday, which marks the beginning of COP27. On Facebook, Seif wrote, “This means if no urgent intervention happened, Alaa will die before the end of #Cop27. These are the actions of a man who’s had enough after nearly 9 years in arbitrary imprisonment.”
Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg is not attending COP27, accusing the summit of misleading the public into thinking polluters are committed to combating climate change.