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Egypt upholds death sentences over police killings

Mass trials in Egypt have sparked international outcry. [Anadolu]

Date of publication: 2 February, 2015

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An Egyptian court on Monday upheld death sentences against 183 men convicted of killing 13 policemen in an attack on a police station in the town of Kerdasa near Cairo, following the overthrow of President Mohammed Morsi.

An Egyptian court has sentenced 183 people to death over the killing of 15 policemen after the 2013 ouster of President Mohammed Morsi. 

Monday's verdict came at the end of one of several mass trials in Egypt that have sparked an international outcry over the sentencing of hundreds of defendants on similar charges. 

Many of the death sentences were later overturned on appeal, and in one incident, a judge was removed.

The suspects in Monday's proceedings were rounded up for attacking a police station in the village of Kirdasah near Cairo. Attackers killed and mutilated bodies of several of the officers. 

The attack came after security forces descended onto two pro-Morsi protest camps in August 2013, killing hundreds. 

The verdict came as Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi spoke for the first time soken publicly about the recent shooting death of a woman protester, offering condolences to her family and all Egyptians "pained" by her death.

Shaimaa el-Sabbagh, a 32-year-old mother and activist, was killed 10 days ago while taking part in a peaceful protest in Cairo. Activists and witnesses at the rally blame the police for her death. 

Egyptian state media on Monday quoted el-Sissi as saying he views Egyptian men and women as his own children and that el-Sabbagh "is my daughter ... no one should doubt that." 

Egypt's top prosecutor has ordered an investigation into the killing and Interior Minister Mohammed Ibrahim, who is in charge of police, said he would personally hand over any force member found to be involved.

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