Egypt sentences 43 protesters to life in prison

Egypt sentences 43 protesters to life in prison
2 min read
26 July, 2017
Egypt hands hefty sentences and fines to protesters accused of committing vandalism and attacking security forces in 2011 protests that removed President Mubarak.
Mass trials have become commonplace in Egypt under President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi [Anadolu]
A court in Cairo sentenced 43 protesters to life in prison and nine others to up to 10 years, in relation to violent acts said to have been committed during the overthrow of former President Hosni Mubarak in 2011.

Authorities accused the defendants of rioting, vandalism and attacking security forces in clashes that saw at least 12 killed and around 2,000 wounded.

The accused were also collectively fined over 17 million Egyptian pounds ($948,661) for damage to public property.

Tuesday's verdict was the result of a retrial after initial verdicts issued in 2015 were given in absentia.

The trial also saw the acquittal of 92 suspects. Those handed sentences will reportedly be allowed to appeal their verdicts.

Since the overthrow of Egypt's first democratically-elected president Mohammad Morsi in 2013, mass trials have become a common occurrence.

This has formed a key feature of the presidency of former army general Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who has led a far-reaching crackdown on public protest and dissent.

Rights groups in Egypt and abroad have harshly criticised the Egyptian government for its human rights record. 

While many have been jailed for protest-related activity under President Sisi, the army strongman's presidency also oversaw the release of ex-president Mubarak from detention six years after his overthrow.