Aya Hijazi and her husband Mohamed Hassanein. Picture taken March 23, 2017. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany Aya Hijazi and her husband Mohamed Hassanein. Picture taken March 23, 2017. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

US-Egyptian children’s rights defender returns to Washington

Fri, Apr. 21, 2017
CAIRO- 21 April 2017: Egyptian-American children's rights defender returned to the United States on Thursday evening after being released from Egyptian prison over charges of human trafficking.

On April 16, the Cairo Criminal Court

acquitted

Aya Hijazi, founder of Belady NGO, along with seven other defendants, including her husband Mohammed Hassanein, after finding them not guilty of charges of human trafficking.

The 30-year-old citizen was arrested alongside her husband, and six others in May 2014 on charges of abusing children in her care, as well as participating in human trafficking, sexual exploitation and torture.

In September 2013, along with Mohammed Hassanein, she launched the (Belady Foundation for Street Children). The foundation aimed to address the plight of street children in Egypt who did not have the opportunity to attend school, and provide them with reading, writing and art classes, recycling workshops, and other activities.
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