An Egyptian woman hugs a youth who was released from Cairo's Tora prison on November 18, 2016 - AFP An Egyptian woman hugs a youth who was released from Cairo's Tora prison on November 18, 2016 - AFP

Sisi pardons 332 prisoners including youth activists

Wed, May. 16, 2018
CAIRO – 16 May 2018: A pardon issued by President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi on Wednesday granted 332 prisoners their freedom. The pardon list included youths and prisoners with health problems.

Pardoned prisoners include Andrew Nassef Salib, a member of the leftist under-construction Bread and Freedom Party, who is serving five years in prison over charges of inciting terrorism; and Islam Fouad Kasem, a member of the liberal Dostour (Constitution) party, who was jailed over participating in illegal protests.

Many other Egyptian activists are still behind the bars for charges related to terrorism and participating in illegal protests. Political activist, Alaa Abdel-Fattah, is one of the prominent activists contesting a five-year sentence for violating Egypt's protest law.

During former President Adly Mansour’s interim governance in 2013, the protest law was issued to provide the Ministry of Interior the right to cancel, postpone or move any protest deemed hazardous.

Sisi has released a decree to amend the Protest Law in May 2017, obligating the minister of interior to submit a request to a court of first instance to cancel, postpone, or change the place or route of a protest in case it threatens public security.

In October 2016, President Sisi announced the formation of a presidential pardon committee, headed by political thinker, Osama al-Ghazaly Harb, for pardoning detainees with charges pending further investigation.

In November 2016, Sisi declared the first presidential pardon list, pardoning 82 detainees, including TV presenter and religious thinker Islam al-Behery, who was charged with “contempt of Islam”.

A second pardon list was declared in March 2017, pardoning 203 detainees. The list included five journalists, according to Masrawy news outlet. In June 2017, Sisi announced pardoning 502 detainees.

On the anniversary of October 6 War, 244 Egyptian prisoners regained their freedom after receiving a pardon by a presidential decree.

On Police Day and the anniversary of the January Revolution in 2018, a pardon list was issued to give 477 Egyptian prisoners their freedom.
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