CAIRO: The Cairo Economic Court adjourned to Jan. 22 the trial of April 6 Youth Movement member Karim Reda for charges of libel and slander against Minister of Petroleum Sameh Fahmy and the Petrotrade company.
“I called for a postponement to give myself a chance to review the case’s documents presented to the court and [to] prepare for my argument,” Ahmed El Gizawy, a lawyer representing Reda, told Daily News Egypt. “The court kindly approved [my request].
“I will accuse the ministry of making false accusations against my client in the next court session,” he added.
El Gizawy added that the charges against Reda include inciting people against a “friendly state,” referring to Israel.
The ministry has called for LE 1 million in compensation.
Reda participated in launching a Facebook campaign entitled “The Egyptian Campaign for Boycotting Gas.” The campaign has garnered 870 members and condemned Egypt’s exportation of natural gas to Israel.
The campaign encouraged people to stop paying their gas bills as a form of civil disobedience in order to force the government to stop exporting its natural gas to Israel.
Petrotrade had filed a previous lawsuit against Reda, accusing him of inciting people to refrain from paying their bills. In December, the Zaitoun Court found Reda innocent of the charges in a verdict described by many as “historical and unprecedented.” The court described Reda as a “patriot” and praised him for launching the campaign.
Although Egypt signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1979, many Egyptians still consider Israel to be an “enemy state” and condemn normalizing relations with Israel due to its policies in dealing with the Palestinians.