Saturday, 7 December 2013

Egypt courts hear appeals of jailed female protesters

Egyptian judges began hearing appeals on Saturday of 21 women and girls handed heavy jail terms over an Islamist protest, in a case that sparked an outcry.

The 14 adult women were handed 11-year jail terms and the seven minors sentenced to juvenile detention last month, shocking even supporters of the military-installed government.

In the adult court, the 14 women were ushered into the defendants’ cage dressed in prison issue white and holding red roses.

They had scrawled the word "freedom" in black marker on their palms. 

The appeal hearing for the minors was being held in an adjacent courtroom.

They were convicted of taking part in a violent protest demanding Islamist president Mohamed Mursi’s reinstatement following his overthrow by the army in July.

There was a heavy police presence outside the court complex in the coastal city of Alexandria, where Mursi’s Islamist supporters have clashed repeatedly with opponents and security forces.

The women’s lawyer, Ahmed al-Hamrawy, told AFP he expected the courts to either acquit them or release them on bail ahead of a final ruling. Read More ...