News / Middle East

Impending Release of Egypt's Hosni Mubarak has Political Overtones

Impending Release of Egypt's Hosni Mubarak has Political Overtonesi
X
August 22, 2013 12:21 AM
Egyptians are awaiting the impending release of former president Hosni Mubarak, held in prison on charges of corruption and the death of demonstrators in 2011. VOA's Jeff Seldin reports while the decision by the Cairo court is based on Egyptian law, there are significant political overtones.
Egyptians are awaiting the impending release of former president Hosni Mubarak, held in prison on charges of corruption and the death of demonstrators in 2011.  While the decision by the Cairo court is based on Egyptian law, there are significant political overtones.

For three decades, former President Hosni Mubarak was the face of Egyptian power.  That an Egyptian court now says his detention must end is no coincidence, according to Middle East analyst James Phillips.

"It's no secret that the army would like to see former President Mubarak released because they consider that a blot on the army's reputation - the fact that he's in jail," said Phillips.

Related video report by Elizabeth Arrott in Cairo:

Egyptian Court Orders Mubarak's Releasei
X
August 21, 2013 3:41 PM
Egypt's former President Hosni Mubarak may soon be released from prison as a round-up of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood members continues, and foreign nations review aid to the Arab world's most populous nation. VOA's Elizabeth Arrott has more from Cairo.

Hosni Mubarak

  • February 11, 2011: Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak resigns amid massive protests across Egypt
  • April 13, 2011: Authorities detain Mubarak
  • May 24, 2011: Officials say Mubarak will stand trial for corruption and deaths of anti-government protesters
  • August 3, 2011: Mubarak's trial starts, he pleads innocent
  • June 2, 2012: Mubarak sentenced to life in prison for complicity in killing of protesters in 2011 uprising
  • January, 2013: Court allows Mubarak to appeal and orders a retrial
  • August 19, 2013: Mubarak acquitted of corruption charge
  • August 21, 2013: Egyptian court orders Mubarak to be released. Faces retrial on charges of complicity in the killing of the protesters
  • August 22, 2013: Mubarak is released from prison and placed under house arrest
Phillips says many in the military have long bristled at images of the former military leader in a cage during court proceedings and that Mubarak's release could help boost morale as the military tries to impose stability.    

The move could also help appease some countries - long friendly with the former Mubarak government - which have pledged billions of dollars to Egypt.

"It could also be a barometer of the growing influence of Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf countries that have lobbied for Mubarak's release," said Phillips.

Yet even though Mubarak's court-ordered release may appear to be a political gambit, there's a legal basis.  The court ruled that even though Mubarak still faces some charges, he has already served the maximum pre-trial detention allowed under Egyptian law.  

Mohamed Badie

  • Elected eighth supreme guide of the Muslim Brotherhood in 2010
  • Became member of Brotherhood's Guidance Bureau in 1996 and International Guidance Bureau in 2007
  • Professor of veterinary medicine at the University of Beni Suef
  • Sentenced to 15 years in prison in 1965 with other Brotherhood members
  • Served 9 years, has been imprisoned several other times
  • Born in 1943
The former leader still must appear in court to answer charges he failed to prevent the deaths of protesters demanding his ouster in 2011. But David Pollack with the Washington Institute says his court-ordered release sends a clear message to the Muslim Brotherhood and others who oppose Egypt's military-led government.

“The statement is, ‘This is a new game.  It’s the Brotherhood who are the real traitors and criminals and terrorists and spies,'" said Pollack.

Increasingly in Egypt, images of Mubarak's incarceration are being replaced by those of senior Brotherhood leaders who now find themselves under arrest.



Elizabeth Arrott in Cairo also contributed to this report 

Jeff Seldin

Jeff works out of VOA’s Washington headquarters and is national security correspondent. You can follow Jeff on Twitter at @jseldin or on Google Plus.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Amantama Adams from: Accra, Ghana
August 22, 2013 9:32 AM
Been an African is the Greatest Honor given by GOD. If been released from prison with heal the Land of Africa, it is a good deal and a thoughtful one as such.

by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
August 22, 2013 12:59 AM
I would like to know if a lot of Moslems who do not support Muslimbrotherhood are awaiting Mubarak's release and come to seat again. I also would like to know if seculair people most of them are probably Christians are also longing to Mubarak's instatement. Or for starters, it might be too hasty to connect his release to his political restoration? Anyway I suppose those who mostly eager Mubarak to return to politics are military and Israel.

by: Richard Johnson
August 21, 2013 4:21 PM
If Tamarod is wondering who is repsonsible for the release of Hosni Mubarak’s release from prison, they need to look in the mirror. They are just as resonsible for the deaths of innocent Egyptians as Mubarak. There is a price to pay when you dance with the devil.

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
August 21, 2013 12:12 PM
Thank God Hosni Mubarak is free again. Right from the on set of the Egypt Spring that metamorphosed into the trial and fouled up investigation, I had insisted he was the only goodman and the only sane head of the potentates to rule Egypt, nay the entire Arab and islamic world. He had been cool headed but the madness of the jihadists was so concealed that those crazy for democracy thought they were the best things to happen to Egypt. Now we know better. Thanks to God Almighty for little mercies.

The idea to separate religion from politics is essential for democracy to grow anywhere and everywhere. The interim government is moving in the right direction here. But on El Bradei, yes he seems to play tricks with what he really believes or where he belongs. His action can be judged tantamount to support to the brotherhood. In other words he might have been a brotherhood sympathizer and would have sabotaged the government had he remained. Since he left, democratic practice dictates that he be left alone. If anything, he only showed himself to be unreliable when the going gets tough. Chickening out under the circumstances did not help his personality nor the situation on ground in the country - it did not provide any solution in any way while the country was on fire. That however does not mean he should be tried for his failure or breach of national trust.

by: Anuoluwapo Oladipo from: Lagos Nigeria
August 21, 2013 10:37 AM
To God be all praise. Shame on all Islamic terrorist. They will soon reap the reward of what they have sown. They have ruined the economy of Egypt; they have brought deaths to all Egyptians, caused oppressions and must surely be punished. How can they do this to the angel of peace knowing well how Hosni Mubarak treated them and dialogued with them? Shame on all these terrorists for being a snitch.
In Response

by: ali baba from: new york
August 21, 2013 5:10 PM
I do agree with our friend of Nigeria. what they said is a fact. unfortuenly .many American policy maker do not get the fact straight that radical Islam is extremely dangerous and it is a threat for the whole globe

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs