Egypt court cancels 3-year sentence for 17 students over clashes on campus

Sunday 17-04-2016 03:16 PM

Al-Azhar University. ASWATMASRIYA (archive)

CAIRO, Apr 17 (Aswat Masriya) - An Egyptian court cancelled on Sunday a three-year prison sentence that was previously handed down to 17 university students in a case related to violence on campus, dating back to 2013.

The Court of Cassation, the highest judicial body in the Egyptian court system, ordered the re-trial of the Azhar University students after accepting their appeal. A retrial is expected to be held in another court circuit.

The students were sentenced to three years and fined EGP 100,000 (around $1125.78) on charges of involvement in violence that took place on campus in 2013.

A number of Egyptian universities saw unrest in 2013 following the military ouster of former president Mohamed Mursi, who hailed from the Muslim Brotherhood group, after mass protests against his rule.  

Clashes between security forces and Mursi's supporters intensified following the violent dispersal of the Rabaa al-Adaweya protest camp in August 2013.

The Rabaa sit-in, which was staged in protest against Mursi's ouster, was violently dispersed by security forces leaving at least 1,000 people dead, according to the U.S.-based watchdog Human Rights Watch.

The Egyptian state's Forensic Authority, however, claimed that 627 were killed in the dispersal, while the National Council for Human Rights put the death toll at 632, including eight security personnel. 

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