Al-Jazeera trial adjourned to April 22
Al Jazeera channel - Photo courtesy of arabia.msn.com
By THE CAIRO POST

CAIRO: Cairo Criminal Court adjourned Thursday the trial of 20 defendants, including four detained Al-Jazeera English reporters, to April 22.

The 20 defendants are facing accusations of spreading false news, belonging to a “terrorist group” and fabricating footage that harms national security.

Judge Mohamed Nagy Shehata adjourned the trial to continue investigations into the evidence, BBC reported.

In the trial’s fifth session, Al-Jazeera correspondent Peter Greste’s belongings were displayed before the courtroom, which included a video of a terrorist attack on a mall in Kenya in 2013 and photos of friends and family.

One of the defendants, Khaled Mohamed Abdel-Raouf, who has been on hunger strike for 15 days, fainted inside the courtroom cage.

Cairo Criminal Court on March 31 adjourned the trial to April 10 so that the court could prepare to observe the video footage, Youm7 reported.

During the trial session on March 24, the imprisoned defendants demanded to be transferred from Al-Akrab prison after they were allegedly tortured and assaulted by police officers.

The first trial was held on Feb. 20, in the presence of foreign representatives, including the General Consulates of the Netherlands, Canada, U.K., U.S., and a delegation from the European Union, along with family members of the suspects.

BBC News, ITN, Sky, Reuters, NBC News and ABC News wrote an open letter to Egyptian authorities protesting the continued imprisonment of journalists in Cairo, the Sunday Post reported on Feb. 19.

Amnesty International asked on Wednesday for Egyptian authorities to end the detention of the Al-Jazeera journalists.

After June 30, several media outlets came under attack and were accused of supporting the Brotherhood. Egypt arrested on Wednesday journalist Abdel Rahman Shaheen in Menoufia over charges of inciting violence and organizing illegal protests in the governorate, reported MENA.

Shaheen is suspected of working as a reporter for Al-Jazeera and for the Muslim Brotherhood-owned Freedom and Justice Party TV channel Egypt 25, MENA added.

Hazem al-Beblawy’s government designated the Brotherhood as a terrorist organization on Dec. 25, 2013, a day after a bombing at Dakahlia Security Directorate, which killed 15 and injured 134.

Additional reporting by Sara Osama Shoureap.

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