Egyptian court recommends death penalty for 31 over assassination of prosecutor

Vincent De Villiers
Junho 19, 2017

Judge Hassan Farid gives the verdict of defendants accused of involvement in the 2015 assassination of Egypt's top prosecutor, in a courtroom on the outskirts of Cairo, Egypt, June 17, 2017.

Egypt's top Prosecutor Hisham Barakat died June 29, 2015 in Cairo when his vehicle blew up in the city centre.

Former public prosecutor Hisham Barakat died of his injuries after a car-bomb attack in Cairo on June 29, 2015.

Later on, Egyptian authorities detained 67 people suspected to be involved in the assassination, the most senior Egyptian state official killed by militants in recent years.

Cairo regularly accuses Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip and is allied with the Muslim Brotherhood, of supporting attacks in Egypt.

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The accused were arrested in wake of the demonstrations that were organized by the banned Muslim Brotherhood against the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi in 2013. Only half of the defendants are in custody, with 15 on the run.

Meanwhile, six other people have been sentenced to death after they had faced a military trial. The definitive verdict is scheduled for July 22.

The court also announced that it was waiting for a non-binding legally-required opinion on the preliminary death sentences to be issued by Egypt's Grand Mufti Shawki Allam, who must review all death sentences according to the country's penal code.

Egypt faces an Islamist insurgency led by the militant Islamic State group in North Sinai, where hundreds of soldiers and police have been killed.

The government ordered a media blackout on the case soon after.

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