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Egypt Frees Blogger from Prison

Egyptian blogger and former law student Abdel Karim Suleiman, also known as Kareem Amer, looking out of a police bus after his trial in the port city of Alexandria, 100 kms north of Cairo, (File).

Egypt has freed a blogger who served a four-year prison term on a conviction of insulting Islam and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

Human rights groups and a relative said Wednesday that Egyptian security officials freed Abdel Kareem Nabil earlier this week. The Cairo-based Arabic Network for Human Rights and Information says he was beaten while in detention.

Nabil, who is also known as Kareem Amer, was attending a university before authorities convicted him in 2006. He was the first blogger in Egypt to be sentenced specifically for his writings.

Last week, human rights groups called for his release, saying he had been held beyond his four-year prison sentence.

Egyptian officials have not explained why he remained imprisoned about a week-and-a-half beyond his term.

The Reporters Without Borders rights group says Amer was subjected to "appalling conditions" while in detention and that he has described being tortured.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.