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10,000 civilians sentenced in Egypt military trial



At least 10,000 civilians have been sentenced in military trials since Egypt’s January 25 uprising that ousted president Hosny Mubarak, a human rights group said Monday.

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information called on the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces to reconsider, saying the activists jailed in military prisons do not get a fair trial.

There has been an uptick in protests to pressure the council, which has been in charge of the country since February, to stop the military trials of civilians.

“We will not be exaggerating if we say that (the) judiciary is the only sector that did not see any changes after the January 25 revolution,” the Cairo-based group said.

Blogger Maikel Nabil, who received a three-year jail sentence in April for “insulting the military establishment” and “spreading false information” when he wrote about allegations of torture against the military on his blog, is one of dozens who was tried in a military court.

Protesters are planning a one million-strong march on Friday in Tahrir Square, the staging area for the popular revolt against Mubarak, to pressure the council to stop the military trials and also bring members of the former regime to justice.

While the military was credited for supporting the 25 January revolution, it has also been criticized for using force against demonstrators afterwards. The armed forces have repeatedly denied these accusations.

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