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Wednesday, August 3, 2011
HOSNI MUBARAK TRAIL: Extraordinary Precautions Taken for Mubarak Trial!
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By HEBA AFIFY, / nytimes.com / Published: August 2, 2011.
CAIRO — Egypt’s interim military government took strong preventive steps on Tuesday to secure the trial location where Hosni Mubarak, the deposed president, was scheduled to face charges of corruption and the killings of Egyptians during the tumultuous 18 days of revolution that led to his forced resignation nearly six months ago.
The prospect that Mr. Mubarak, a former Arab strongman who for nearly 30 years routinely imprisoned political adversaries, would now be called to account in a public trial televised live has transfixed Egypt and much of the Arab world. Many Egyptians remained skeptical that it would actually happen in the final hours before the scheduled start on Wednesday morning. A conviction could carry the death penalty.
The Ministry of Interior and the Army said 5,000 soldiers and officers backed by 50 tanks and armored vehicles would be deployed along the route where Mr. Mubarak and his co-defendants, including his two sons, would be transported to court as well as the court itself, a Cairo police academy. Officials said barbed wire would ring the police academy to stop intruders, and security forces would surround the facility’s outer fence.
No one will be allowed inside except the 600 people with the permits, plus civil rights lawyers and a small number of the families of victims of the Mr. Mubarak’s failed effort to crush the revolution.
Officials said their security plan included ways to ensure separation between the people attending the trial and the accused, to avoid any verbal or physical assaults on the defendants themselves.