Egypt court imprisons opposition leader for illegally entering Gaza

[JURIST] An Egyptian military court on Wednesday sentenced an Islamist opposition leader to two years in prison for illegally entering Gaza. Magdy Ahmed Hussein, leader of the Labor Party [party website, in Arabic], was arrested last month on suspicion of crossing into the territory via an illegal tunnel. Hussein was also fined 5,000 Egyptian pounds, or about USD $900. Hussein's trial has been criticized by human rights groups for the decision to prosecute under military law [EOHR press release] and restrictions placed on Hussein's access to lawyers [ANHRI press release].

Hussein's trial was carried out under the emergency laws [EOHR backgrounder] that have been in effect since the 1981 assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and were renewed [JURIST report] in May 2008. Human Rights Watch [advocacy website] sharply criticized the renewal [JURIST report], saying the move showed "contempt for the rule of law." Egypt has used military tribunals extensively against members of the Muslim Brotherhood [party website; JURIST news archive].

 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.