CAIRO: The Hikestep Military Court on Tuesday postponed the trial of 40 Muslim Brotherhood (MB) members for the second time to April 15.
Brotherhood lawyer Abdel Moneim Abdel Maqsoud believes that the decision to postpone the case was a “direct order from the government which is the executive authority because it wants to wait until the local council elections are over.
He added that “the decision is clear evidence that the military judiciary system is not independent and that all the statements indicating that it is are nothing but lies.
According to Abdel Maqsoud, the court judges were not present at the session and the decision was delivered to the defense team by a process server, adding to Abdel Maqsoud’s frustration.
Abdel Maqsoud expressed concern that the government will postpone the case for a third time until the sports clubs elections, scheduled to take place next July, are also over.
“It [the government] might even postpone the verdict until all the elections that are scheduled to take place this year are over, Abdel Maqsoud added.Last Thursday, Belgium hosted a conference discussing human rights in Egypt under the title “Freedoms and Human Rights in Egypt, where to? which denounced the military trials of civilians.
Its organizers – Justice International in London, the Paris-based Arab Commission for Human Rights, the Coalition for Freedom and Dignity in Brussels in addition to the “Release40, the international campaign calling for releasing the detained members referred to the military court – all called on the international, national and Arab human rights organizations to intervene and pressure the Egyptian government by all “possible means to stop civilians from being tried in military courts and improve the human rights conditions in the country.
On Tuesday, Zachary Wolfe, attorney at the National Labor Relations Council in Washington; Dr Marvin Morgan, a bishop and coordinator of religious human rights organizations in the United States; as well as Clayton Ramy, a prominent human rights activist arrived in Cairo to observe the trial.
Arrested in December 2006, the detainees, including Khayrat El Shater, the third highest-ranking member and chief financier, were accused of financing a banned group. Despite being exonerated by civilian courts, in February 2007 President Hosni Mubarak ordered them transferred to a military court.