Egyptian court releases researcher Patrick Zaki: human rights organization | Human Rights News

An Egyptian court ordered the release of the imprisoned researcher Patrick George Zaki (Patrick George Zaki), awaiting trial, a move welcomed by human rights defenders and the prime minister of Italian citizens.

The Egyptian Individual Rights Initiative (EIPR), which represents Zaki, said on Tuesday that the courts in Mansoura City in the Nile Delta postponed Zaki’s trial until February 1 to allow prosecutors and defense lawyers time to prepare their arguments.

Saki Got arrested On February 7, 2020, after he landed at Cairo International Airport to visit his family.He was accused of “spreading fake news” related to an article he wrote​​ Christian dilemma In Egypt.

Before the trial started in September, Zaki had been detained before the trial for more than a year and a half.

He previously worked as a researcher at the Egyptian Individual Rights Initiative (EIPR), a leading independent rights organization in Egypt.

EIPR’s Lobna Darwish said that when the trial is scheduled to resume on February 1, the arguments in the trial still need to be heard.

“The judge just postponed and released him during this period,” she said, adding that it is not yet clear how quickly Zaki’s body was released.

Darwish said Zaki initially attended the hearing in Mansoura, his hometown north of Cairo, on Tuesday, but he was no longer present when the judge announced his decision.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi expressed “satisfaction” in a statement from his office. “This issue has been and will be closely watched by the Italian government,” it said.

Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio said on Twitter: “The first goal has been achieved. Patrick Zaki is no longer in prison.”

Translation: The Mansoura Minority Court decided to release Patrick George Zaki and postpone his trial until February 1, 2022.

EIPR stated that Zaki was beaten, shocked and threatened after his arrest. The Egyptian authorities have not yet commented on EIPR’s claims.

“I jumped for joy!” his mother Hala Sobhy told AFP. “We are now on the way to Mansoura Police Station.”

This move was welcomed by human rights activists who have long fought for his release, such as Riccardo Noury, spokesperson for Amnesty International Italy.

“Although he is still undergoing trial, this is a big step forward,” Nuri wrote on Twitter.

Amr Abdelwahab, an activist and friend of the imprisoned researcher, warned that Zaki could still face jail.

“They are still trying to write an article for Patrick. We are not sure if he can travel or if he needs to stay in the police station for a while. We are not sure if they will sentence him to jail in February,” he said on social media. Said.

Rights activists say Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has overseen an unprecedented crackdown on freedoms – including banning all unauthorised demonstrations – since first taking power in 2013 and then winning elections in 2014.

Human rights organizations say tens of thousands of people have been sentenced to prison. Sisi said that security and stability are the most important, and denied that there are political prisoners in Egypt.

Egyptian law expands the definition of “terrorism” to include all political dissidents, and gives prosecutors broad powers to detain people for months. Even year, Never lodged an accusation or produced evidence.

Zaki’s arrest shocked Italy, and the researcher is studying for a master’s degree in gender and women’s studies at the University of Bologna. Italian graduate student killed in Egypt in 2016 Giulio Regini, Shaking the relationship between the two countries.

Although Italian prosecutors accused four members of the Egyptian security forces of kidnapping and murdering Regini, no one was arrested for killing the 28-year-old man.

Italy began trial of the four suspects, but Litigation suspended In October, because of concerns that these people may not know that they have been charged.

“We will continue to support him,” Erasmo Palazzotto, the chairman of the Italian parliament’s investigation into Regini’s death, wrote on Twitter, referring to the Zaki case.

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