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Egypt 'to release' detained Sisi presidential rival Anan Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Egypt 'to release' detained Sisi presidential rival Anan

Anan had been the most credible election rival to Sisi in the election [Getty]

Date of publication: 1 April, 2018

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Egyptian authorities are reportedly working to release a former military chief of staff, who was arrested after announcing his intention to run in this week's presidential election.

Egyptian authorities are reportedly working to release a former military chief of staff, who was arrested after announcing his intention to run in this week's presidential election.

Egypt's military prosecution ordered Sami Anan's release from a military prison on Saturday, sources close to Anan told The New Arab, adding that his detained chief aide will also likely be set free.

The sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that authorities have transferred Anan from a military prison to his home, where is he is under house arrest.

They added that Anan's final release will depend on the former presidential hopeful agreeing on adopting a narrative favourable to the government after his release.

The sources said authorities are also working to reach a deal with former chief auditor and senior Anan aide Hisham Genena, who was arrested weeks after Anan over claims he had documents incriminating Egypt's "leadership" in unspecified violations.

Genena was beaten by unidentified men outside his home ahead of the elections.

The move comes days after polls closed in a presidential election that saw President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi win a second term in a virtual one-horse race.

Sisi's sole challenger was the little-known Moussa Mostafa Moussa, himself a supporter of the president, with all other heavy-weight would-be challengers being sidelined, detained or pulling out.

Authorities accused Anan of having declared his candidacy illegally while still a registered officer in the military, as well as incitement against the armed forces.

Anan had been the most credible election rival to Sisi in the election.

While Geneina was accused of spreading "false news that harms national Egyptian security and affects the military institution and threatens authority".

Sisi, a former defence minister, came to power after ousting his Islamist predecessor Mohamed Morsi following mass protests against the Muslim Brotherhood member.

Sisi won an election a year later.

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