News / Middle East

    Egypt Court Overturns Conviction in 39 Deaths

    Wounded man lies on the ground as Egyptian security forces clear demonstration by supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi near Egypt's Cairo University, August 2013.
    Wounded man lies on the ground as Egyptian security forces clear demonstration by supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi near Egypt's Cairo University, August 2013.

    Related Articles

    Egypt Court Sentences 10 Brotherhood Supporters to Death

    All 10 are assumed to be in hiding amid a state crackdown on the group since the army toppled Egypt's first freely-elected civilian President Mohamed Morsi last July
    Reuters
    A Cairo appeals court on Saturday overturned the conviction of a police officer sentenced to 10 years in jail in connection with 39 deaths during political violence last year, judicial sources said.

    In one of the most controversial incidents since the army’s July ouster of Islamist President Mohamed Morsi, 39 men died during what the Interior Ministry said was an attempted prison break. The ministry had described the men as Islamists, Muslim Brotherhood members and their supporters.

    The prosecutor's office later said its investigations showed the men died while being transported to jail in an overcrowded police van into which tear gas was fired.

    In March, at the original trial, Lt. Col. Amr Farouk was sentenced to 10 years in jail with labor on charges of involuntary manslaughter and extreme negligence.

    Appeals court judge Mohamed Amel on Saturday sent the case back to the prosecutor general and ordered a new investigation that could result in a new trial or in the case being dismissed, legal sources said.

    The decision "means that the case is back to square one," Amr Imam, a human rights attorney, told the news service AFP.

    AFP reported the court also overturned suspended one-year sentences for three other officers involved in the case.  

    Journalists were forbidden from attending Saturday’s hearing at the Cairo police academy.

    Reuters reported that, according to the website of the official newspaper, Al-Ahram, the four police officers cheered and yelled "long live justice!" after the judge read his decision.

    Prosecutor’s office found problem

    According to the prosecutor's office, 45 people were crammed into a van made to carry 24 and subjected to tear gas fire.

    "This led to the death of 37 prisoners and the suffocation of two others," said its report issued last October.

    An investigation by Britain's Guardian newspaper concluded that not all of those in the police van were Islamists. Some were not even Morsi supporters, it found, but had simply been rounded up in the chaos following the Aug. 14 clearing of a pro-Morsi sit-in in a Cairo suburb.

    Hundreds of Brotherhood supporters and members of the security forces have been killed in the upheaval since Morsi was overthrown by former army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, who will be sworn in as president on Sunday. The Brotherhood, Egypt's biggest political force until last year, has been outlawed and driven underground.

    It was not immediately clear if Farouk would be released from jail. The prosecutor general's office was not immediately available for comment.

    Some information for this report was provided by AFP.

    You May Like

    Native Americans Ask: What About Our Water Supply?

    They say they have been facing a dangerous water contaminant for decades - uranium – but the problem has received far less attention than water contamination by lead in Flint, Michigan

    Pakistan's President Urges Nation Not to Celebrate Valentine's Day

    Mamnoon Hussain criticizes Valentine's Day, which falls on Sunday this year, as a Western import that threatens to undermine the Islamic values of Pakistan

    Mother of IS Supporter: Son Was Peaceful, 'Role Model'

    Somali-American Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State militants

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortagei
    X
    February 12, 2016 7:31 PM
    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Russia's Catholics, Orthodox Hopeful on Historic Pope-Patriarch Meeting

    Russia's Catholic minority has welcomed an historic first meeting Friday in Cuba between the Pope and the Patriarch of Russia's dominant Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church split with Rome in 1054 and analysts say politics, both church and state, have been driving the relationship in the centuries since. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.