Researcher arrested in Cairo not Italian: Egypt’s Interior Ministry

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Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 03:56 GMT

FILE - Patrick George Zaki

FILE - Patrick George Zaki

CAIRO – 10 February 2020: The Egyptian Interior Ministry on Sunday said Patrick George, a researcher in an Italian university who was arrested two days ago in the Cairo International Airport, is an Egyptian citizen, denying earlier reports that he is an Italian national.

Patrick George Zaki Seliman is his full name, the Interior Ministry said on its Facebook page, adding that the prosecution decided to detain him for 15 days pending investigation.

Patrick is a researcher in the University of Bologna, in northern Italy. The Italian authorities have reportedly called for releasing him, but did not claim he is an Italian citizen.

Preliminary investigations reveal that Patrick faces accusations of spreading false news and statements to distort social peace, inciting people to protest without obtaining a permit, seeking to overthrow the regime through incitement and promoting principles and thoughts that lead to changing the basic principles of the constitution, according to media reports.

He also faces charges of managing and using an online account for the purpose of disturbing public order, harming national security and promoting the commission of a terrorist crime and the use of violence.

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