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Egyptian judges of NGO case drop out


09:23, February 29, 2012

CAIRO, Feb. 28 (Xinhua) -- Egyptian judges in charge of the NGO trial on Tuesday decided to drop out from the case, official news agency MENA reported.

A memo submitted by the presiding Judge Mohamed Mahmoud Shokry to Abdel-Moez Ibrahim, chief of the Court of Appeal, said all judges decided to secede from the case.

Shokry did not give clear reasons for their exit, and asked Ibrahim to refer the case to another panel of judges.

Cairo Criminal Court started on Sunday the trial of 43 workers of domestic and foreign NGOs. The court postponed the trial to April 26 for studying all the documents. The session was attended by only 14 of the defendants.

The charged people include 19 Americans, the son of the U.S. Transportation Secretary being one of them, 14 Egyptians and others from Serbia, Germany, Lebanon, Jordan and the Palestinian territories.

They face charges of establishing branches of international organizations in Egypt without work permits and receiving foreign money to fund these branches, which is considered a violation of the Egyptian sovereignty.

The International Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute are among the organizations accused of receiving 40 million U.S. dollars over six months.


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