Former Egyptian president, Hosni Mubarak was freed from his prison/hospital for the first time in 6 years today, after the public tried and failed to imprison the leader forever when they put him on trial for his part in the violence in Tahrir Square.
Mubarak, 88, had been convicted of causing the deaths of 850 protesters, killed by his security forces in Cairo during the 18-day uprising which began in January 2011. His “prison” was a very nice apartment overlooking the Nile river.
Recently, Egypt’s highest court struck down the ruling, making Mubarak, despite being a dictator for several decades, will be free to live as a citizen, it looks like.
The Daily Mail explains:
His lawyer Farid El Deeb said today: ‘Yes, he is now in his home in Heliopolis.’
Heliopolis is an affluent suburb and his home is not far from the presidential palace from where Mubarak had ruled Egypt for 30 years.
The Independent reported that an explosion in Maadi, not far from the hospital, killed one person today and injured three others, although it is not clear if it was connected to his release.
Mubarak’s release follows years of litigation involving cases ranging from corruption to the killing of protesters in and around Tahrir Square.
He was initially arrested in April 2011, two months after leaving office, and has since been held in prison and in military hospitals under heavy guard.
Egypt’s current President, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, is a former General who spent years serving under Mubarak in the Egyptian Army and came to power in 2013 after overthrowing Mohammed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood leader who was elected President in 2012.
Mubarak was accused of inciting the deaths of protesters during the 18-day revolt, in which about 850 people were killed as police clashed with demonstrators.
He was sentenced to life in 2012 in the case, but an appeals court ordered a retrial which dismissed the charges two years later.
Egypt’s top appeals court on March 2 acquitted him of involvement in the killings.
In January 2016, the appeals court upheld a three-year prison sentence for Mubarak and his two sons on corruption charges.
But the sentence took into account time served. Both of his sons, Alaa and Gamal, were freed.
Yesterday a court ordered a renewed corruption investigation into Mubarak for allegedly receiving gifts from the state-owned Al-Ahram newspaper.
Meanwhile several key activists in the 2011 uprising are now serving lengthy jail terms, and rights groups say hundreds of others have been forcibly disappeared.
Harriet McCulloch, a deputy director at London-based human rights organisation Reprieve, said: ‘As Hosni Mubarak goes free in Egypt, thousands of prisoners still languish in horrific prison conditions.
‘Many face the death penalty on charges relating to protests, in mass trials that make a mockery of due process. Some were arrested as children – people like Irish citizen Ibrahim Halawa, who has suffered terrible abuses in jail.
‘The Sisi Government must now show that Egypt’s justice system is worthy of the name and release Ibrahim, and the hundreds like him.’
Some of those who took part in the Arab Spring now feel the uprising was in vain.
Ahmed Mohamed, 29, who was one of thousands who took part in the protests to remove Mubarak, said: ‘Honestly, I found that all of that was useless. Mubarak’s time was a lot better in all aspects.’