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Egyptian court overturns jail terms for 47 protesters

Egyptian court overturns jail terms for 47 protesters


An Egyptian court has overturned dozens of five-year jail sentences.

On Wednesday, Egypt’s court of appeal cancelled the prison terms handed to 47 people earlier this month.

The defendants had been accused of participating in demonstrations against a decision by president Al Sisi to transfer two Red Sea islands to Saudi Arabia last month.

A lower court had handed down the sentence and a fine of about $11,000 each earlier this month. The appeal court, however, upheld the fine.

More than 200 people have being tried in connection with the protests. They have been accused of illegally protesting, attempting to overthrow the government, and disturbing public peace.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has often criticised the north African country of its flawed judicial system and its campaign against activists and journalists.

In 2013, a controversial protest law was issued banning street protest in the country without prior permission from the police.

Since the current regime took office, authorities have imprisoned tens of thousands and outlawed the country’s largest opposition group, the Muslim Brotherhood.

In 2014, hundreds of Egyptians were sentenced to death after convicted in participating in anti-government riots.