Egypt’s Presidential Pardon Committee Sparks Controversy

The Egyptian Minister of Justice, Omar Marawan, denied the release of any pretrial detainees in a presidential pardon, in reference to the presidential pardon committee, stressing that presidential pardons can be made after a final court ruling not before it.

Last Ramadan, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi declared the intention to reactivate the presidential pardon committee that was formed in late 2016, claiming that “the nation accommodates everyone regardless of their political affiliation.”

The Justice Minister’s statement sparked controversy over the main responsible for the fate of thousands of detainees, whether held in pretrial or with final rulings.

In televised statements, the Minister explained that the presidential pardon can be offered after final judicial rulings, and it is regulated by the constitution and the law, stressing that no party is entitled to intervene to release in  pretrial detainees.

The statements came in total contradiction to the presidential pardon committee’s announcement of the release of pretrial detainees over the past period.

Member  of the presidential pardon committee Tariq Al-Khouli has earlier revealed that coordination was going between all concerned authorities for the release of pretrial detainees in a presidential pardon.

The committee earlier pointed out that detainees can be included in  presidential pardon lists if they don’t belong to a terrorist organization and not involved in violence.

In this regard, we call on the Egyptian authorities to release all political detainees and prisoners of conscience held over fabricated and flimsy charges.

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