The prosecutor general appealed Saturday against the release of 25 detainees arrested during violence on the second anniversary of the Mohamed Mahmoud Street clashes after the judge at Abdeen Court ordered their release on EGP 5,000 bail. The detainees will be tried on Sunday at Zienhom Court.
The case involves three minors: Abdelrahman Sobhy Kamal, Mahmoud Raafat and Mohamed Ghanem. Kamal was sent to the Marg Correctional Facility and Raafat was taken to a medical facility. Ghanem meanwhile saw his detention extended for an additional 15 days, a move which activist Mona Seif said was likely taken after police found flares in the evidence associated with him.
Seif added that with the correctional facility in Marg over-crowded, the decision to extend Ghanem’s detention “might be in his best interest, so as to stay among those who were detained with him in the beginning” even if this is illegal because he is still a minor.
Mohamed Ghanem is a 16 year old who was arrested on November 19 near Kasr Al-Nil Bridge before the clashes. A friend of Ghanem’s said he was targeted by the police for wearing an Al-Ahly football jersey, adding that Ghanem has no political affiliations.
Of the 30 protesters arrested during unrest on the second anniversary of the Mohamed Mahmoud clashes, three detainees’ detentions were extended for 15 days after “incriminating evidence” was found with them at the time of their arrest. Two of the detainees were protesting against the military while the third was pro military. The evidence found with the anti military protesters were; flyers, stickers, and a gas mask, while the military supporter was found in possession of an improvised birdshot weapon.
Mohamed Sobhy from the Front to Defend Egypt’s Protesters said that his organisation would “defend any detained protester and will assure his right to a lawyer, regardless of political affiliation.”
The Revolutionary Front protested Saturday morning in front of Abdeen Court for the release of the anti-military detainees. “We are here to protest against the harassments and arrests by the Ministry of Interior (MOI) against any peaceful protester not just the members of the front,” said Basma Al-Husseiny, one of the front’s founding members.
The front was joined at the protest by several other revolutionary groups, including Al-Rabtah, Ultras Revolutionary, along with the friends and family of Ghanem.
Al-Rabtah is an independent group of protesters that was launched one week before the second anniversary of the Mohamed Mahmoud clashes with the purpose of securing Tahrir Square during the anniversary. One of its members highlighted that the group includes members from different political affiliations, “except followers of the two ousted presidents.”
Ultras Revolutionary, formed in November 2012, was present “to show solidarity with [friend and detainee] Mahmoud Hussein,” according to the group’s media spokesman Ashraf Mahmoud. Hussien was arrested as the police dispersed protesters last Tuesday morning, Mahmoud added.
Meanwhile, the pro-military We Trust You campaign held a demonstration around the court’s premises protesting the detention of one of its members, Ahmed Abdel Ghany.
“Abdel Ghany is the administrator of our Facebook page and was arrested on 19 November for possession of a firearm,” said Ikramy Mustafa, the campaign’s media coordinator, claiming that he had only been arrested for snatching a firearm from a Morsi supporter.
The We Trust You campaign was formed to support the state’s institutions, notably the military and security forces. The group chanted in support of the military and the police.
While the protests outside the court led to small confrontations, significant clashes were absent, as the revolutionary groups had asked their supporters to leave a space between them and the pro-military group.