Monday, August 06, 2007

Egypt: Amnesty International calls for President to allow observers at key military trial


Amnesty International announced today that it has written to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, urging him to ensure that independent observers are permitted access to the trial of 40 members of the Muslim Brotherhood, scheduled to resume before the Supreme Military Court in Cairo on Sunday.

The organization made this call following two earlier trial hearings when legal observers sent by Amnesty International and other human rights organizations were barred from entering the court.

"We look to President Mubarak, as Egypt's highest authority, to open the doors to this important trial," said Amnesty International's Secretary General Irene Khan. "He should clear the way for it to receive the scrutiny it deserves."

Amnesty International's trial observer, Jordanian lawyer Samieh Khreis, was previously among a number of international and Egyptian legal observers who were turned away by security officials when they attempted to enter the Supreme Military Court during its last session on 15 July. Observers were also turned away when they attempted to attend a previous session of the trial on 3 June 2007.

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