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The New Arab

Egypt 'preparing to implicate' police official for Regeni murder

Egypt has denied its security forces were involved in Regeni's death [Getty]

Date of publication: 18 September, 2016

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Egypt is preparing to "sacrifice" a senior police officer and prosecute him for the torture and murder of Italian student Giulio Regeni.

Egypt is preparing to "sacrifice" a senior police officer and prosecute him for the torture and murder of Italian student Giulio Regeni.

Egyptian authorities will soon implicate the official after caving into international pressure to admit police were behind the 28-year-old student's death, an Egyptian political source told The New Arab on Saturday.

Regeni disappeared on January 25 in central Cairo, and his body was later found by the side of a road bearing signs of brutal torture. Egypt has denied its security forces were involved.

"Cairo is in the process of preparing to announce that a senior police officer involved in the incident will be taken to court so as to close this case," the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said.

"A number of world leaders refused to meet with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi during the G20 in China earlier this month because of the incident."

The source said Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi declined to meet with Sisi because of fears it would lead to an angry backlash back at home, adding that British Prime Minister Theresa May also refused to meet with the Egyptian president.

"German Chancellor Angela Merkel told Sisi on the sidelines of the summit to reveal the identities of Regeni's killers as soon as possible and that there would be no restoration of normal relations between Egypt and Europe before his killers were prosecuted," the source added.

Last week, Egypt admitted that police had investigated the activities Regeni days before his abduction but dropped the probe after assessing he posed no threat.

It was the first official Egyptian acknowledgement that Regeni had been on the radar of security services.

Italy recalled its ambassador to Cairo in April in protest at what it said was a lack of progress in the investigation.

Egyptian police officials had at first suggested Regeni might have died in a road accident, and have since offered little information on their investigation.

In March, police linked a gang it said extorted foreigners to Regeni's death, saying his belongings had been found in the home of the gang leader's wife.

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