51 people sentenced to 2 years over protesting Red Sea Islands deal

CAIRO: Qasr al-Nile Misdemeanor Court on Saturday sentenced 51 people to two years in prison for staging demonstrations against a decision by Egypt to acknowledge Saudi Arabia’s sovereignty over the Red Sea islands of Tiran and Sanafir, Youm7 reported.

The convicts were charged with inciting riots, blocking roads, and breaching the protest law on April 25, the prosecution said. However, the court ruling is not final and can be challenged.

In mid-April, Egypt announced that the islands of Tiran and Sanafir are Saudi territories; both sides reached an agreement, per which Egypt relinquished control of the islands of Tiran and Sanafir, located at the entrance of Al-Aqaba Gulf in the Red Sea. The accord has stirred public anger, pushing thousands of people to take to the streets on April 15 when a total of 25 other protesters were arrested.

However, on April 25, students, activists, and journalists protested again against the decision and the arrests made on April 15. During the April 25 protests, a total of 73 people, including the 51 defendants, were arrested.

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