Cairo Criminal Court adjourned on Tuesday the trial of 739 defendants in the “Rabaa dispersal” case to 8 October, to continue examining evidence.
Photojournalist Mahmoud Abou Zeid, known as Shawkan, is among the defendants in the case. Several leaders from the Muslim Brotherhood are being tried in the same case as well.
Shawkan’s lawyer Taher Aboul Nasr told Daily News Egypt that there is nothing new in the case, and the court has resumed the examining of evidence. He added that the detention of Shawkan will continue until the next session.
Shawkan has been held in pretrial detention for over 1,000 days. This does not comply with Egypt’s penal code, which stipulates that the remand period should not exceed two years. Shawkan used to work for an international organisation before his detention, which sent several documents proving that he is a photojournalist and was assigned to cover the sit-in dispersal of Rabaa Al-Adawaeyya. However, the arbitrary nature of Shawkan’s extended detention continues.
The defendants in this case are facing charges of vandalism, attempted murder, and planning an armed insurrection, among other charges.
Shawkan was detained in August 2013 during the Rabaa Al-Adaweyya sit-in dispersal along with other journalists. However, all the journalists who were arrested during the dispersal were released shortly after, except for Shawkan.