To declare it his lawyer: the notification tomorrow or the day after tomorrow
Patrick Zaki’s pre-trial detention in prison “has been renewed”. One of his lawyers, Hoda Nasrallah, told ANSA without being able to specify for how many days: this will be notified “tomorrow or the day after tomorrow”, added the lawyer contacted by telephone about the outcome of today’s hearing.
The thirty-year-old student of the University of Bologna has been in prison in Cairo for a year and a half on suspicion of being a threat to national security. According to the lawyer, he is physically fine, but he is very psychologically tested. As already happened in the numerous hearings of the past months, Zaki reiterated his extraneousness to the facts and the lawyer asked for his release. As always, representatives of the Italian embassy in Cairo were also present at today’s hearing.
The new hearing had been called a little before the expiration of the month and a half scheduled after the last session which took place on 12 July. Activists fighting for his release stressed that it is a “special day for Coptic Christians like Patrick: it is the feast of the Virgin Mary. We still have faith that things can change and that the court will decide to allow Patrick to spend this party with his family ». It was not so.
The researcher was arrested on February 7, 2020, that is more than 18 months ago, but the pre-trial detention in Egypt can last two years with the possibility of extensions if, during the investigation, new elements of accusation emerge. If he goes to trial, Patrick faces up to 25 years in prison, according to Amnesty International. The Italian mobilization in his favor, which institutionally culminated in a request from the Chamber of Deputies to the Government of Italian citizenship, has so far not led to his release from prison. The charges against him are based on ten posts from a Facebook account that his lawyers consider edited by another person but which have configured, among other things, the “dissemination of false news”, “incitement to protest” and ” the incitement to violence and terrorist crimes ».