Prosecution studies release of detainees
President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi - YOUM7

CAIRO: A decision to pardon a number of defendants who are detained pending investigations is being studied by the prosecution, reported Youm7 Thursday.

The prosecution’s move comes follow’s President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi’s two-day old announcement to pardon arrested activists and journalists; both on the occasion of the fourth anniversary of the January 25 Revolution.

The prosecution is now reviewing the legal status of some defendants who were arrested over alleged violence and gathering-related accusations to decide on the possibility of releasing them.

The office of the Attorney General Hisham Barakat received dozens of complaints from the families of the defendants, and he ordered a review of each complainant’s case, Youm7 reported.

Among the complaints, there are requests to release persons accused in incidents that took place since the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi in July 3; including, the dispersal of Rabaa al-Adaweya and al-Nahda sit-ins; Unknown Soldier memoriam clashes; Republic guards’ events; violence incidents at Azhar Universities and protests in different governorates.

During his meeting with a media delegation in United Arab Emirates Jan. 19, Sisi announced that the government is already preparing a list of arrested activists and journalists who will be released. According to him, the decision to release the activists would both ease the situation in Egypt and prove that activists are not targeted by the state.

He further explained that those who will be released are the ones who either did not commit anything wrong, or “slightly crossed the rules in an acceptable way.”

On Jan. 13, a presidential decree was issued to pardon prisoners who have completed half of their prison terms (which must be at least six months,) by Jan. 25, 2015.

So far, the names of the prisoners or the detainees pending investigations who will be released have not yet been announced.

Additional reporting by Ahmed Metwally, Nourhan Magdi and Aya Samir

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