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Egypt releases 41 political prisoners: negotiator

Egypt on Sunday launched 41 political prisoners from pre-trial detention, in line with a baby-kisser-grew to become-negotiator, in a country where many more continue to be behind bars.

“Forty-one of these held on remand detention on political prices and (charges related to) freedom of idea and expression” had been released, Mohamed al-Sadat said.

Long a fixture of Egypt’s political scene, Sadat is a nephew of former president Anwar al-Sadat and has these days emerged as an unofficial negotiator for political prisoners.

Rights groups estimate that tens of thousands of such prisoners are being held in Egypt.

Among those freed Sunday, prominent lawyer Khaled Ali told AFP, were journalist Mohamed Salah, researcher Abdo Fayed and activists Walid Shawky, Haitham al-Banna and Hassan al-Barbary.

Activist Radwa Mohamed, who was arrested in 2019 for criticizing the regime amid rare protests calling for Sisi’s removal from office, was another of those released, according to her lawyer Nabeeh al-Ganadi.

All six were charged with “belonging to a terrorist organization and spreading false news” – an accusation frequently leveled against dissidents in Egypt.

Shawky had begun a hunger strike in February. Both he and Salah had previously been ordered released before new charges were leveled against them — a common tactic used to circumvent Egypt’s two-year maximum pretrial detention period, according to rights groups.

More detainees will be released, Sadat hinted, as “legal and humanitarian reviews” will very likely leave some eligible for “presidential pardons” that are conventionally handed down around Eid, set for the first week of May.

In an interview with AFP, Egyptian-Palestinian activist Ramy Shaath, who was released in January, detailed brutal conditions and treatment in prison, describing inmates as “rotting in hell”.

This week, 4 social media comedians were arrested on costs of terrorism and spreading fake news for a tune published on-line that satirized the government’s failure to rein in rampant inflation.

In November, Human Rights Watch accused the international network of “worthwhile repressive rule” via selecting the North African states  To host the next weather summit — the COP27, scheduled for November.

Courtesy Bol News

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