Egypt’s military council releases 115 protesters without resorting to military trials
CAIRO (BNO NEWS) — Egypt’s ruling Supreme Council of the Military Forces (SCAF) released more than 100 protesters arrested during rallies without conducting a single military trial. This is the first time such an act occurs since the Egyptian revolution began earlier this year.
Mona Seif, member of the No Military Trials campaign, told Al-Ahram state-owned newspaper that the military council released on Wednesday 115 individuals who were allegedly arrested on August 1. On Monday, security forces stormed Cairo’sTahrir square to end a three-week old sit-in, beating and arresting hundreds of people.
Seif added that she suspects that the army might not have divulged the true number of those detained that day. “We have no clue whether there are others in military jails, and therefore we will continue working on this case,” Seif told the newspaper.
Among those arrested were four persons between the ages of 14 and 16.
Activists and human rights organizations have been criticizing the ruling military council in recent weeks for its use of military tribunals to prosecute over 10,000 individuals it accuses of breaking public order. They are also asking for the immediate release of all civilians who have been sentenced by military courts and their retrial before civilian courts.
Last month, the SCAF vowed to consider the No Military Trials campaign’s proposal to refer all cases against civilians who have been tried in military courts to a civil judge. They also promised to investigate allegations of torture by military police.
According to Amnesty International, at least 840 people were killed and over 6,000 people were injured in the violent repression that took place during the January uprising. President Hosni Mubarak, who ruled Egypt in a 30-year-long regime, stepped down after the mass protests.
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