Cairo’s Criminal Court on Monday adjourned the trial of ousted President Hosni Mubarak until 6 July, after it ordered the release of Alaa and Gamal Mubarak pending investigations in other cases. During the session, aired live on state television, presiding judge Mahmoud Kamel al-Rashidi stressed the case would be run in a fair manner. Rashidi said that to ensure the proper execution of justice, he would be introducing further restrictions on who could attend Mubarak’s retrial proceedings. Egypt’s ousted leader Mubarak is standing retrial over charges of murdering protesters and abuse of power. The judge, presiding over the trial at the police academy in Cairo, has announced that only defendants, their defence lawyers, their relatives and state television reporters can sit in on proceedings. Osman al-Hefnawy, a plaintiff lawyer, said the court’s chief had breached the law by preventing other judges from attending the Monday session.
Speaking to Al Jazeera Mubasher Misr outside the courtroom, Hefnawy called on the presiding judge to justify his decision. A host of local and international reporters were also present at the gates of the police academy as clashes erupted between Mubarak supporters and victims’ families. Dozens of pro-Mubarak demonstrators clambered over separating barriers to harass victims’ families while members of the pro-regime We Are Sorry Mr. President group chanted against the ruling Muslim Brotherhood and rallied outside with pictures of the former leader.
A relative of one of the protesters killed in Egypt’s 2011 revolution then grabbed a poster of Mubarak and ripped it apart. Victims’ families meanwhile demanded retribution for the deaths of their loved ones. Security forces quickly intervened to calm the unrest. Mubarak, along with ex-Interior Minister Habib al-Adly and 6 other security officials, faces charges of murdering protesters during the January 2011 uprising which overthrew Mubarak’s 30-year grip on power. His sons, Alaa and Gamal along with fugitive businessman Hussein Salem, also stand trial before the same court over multiple charges of abuse of power and financial corruption.