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Ibrahim Halawa trial adjourned for sixth time after bail refusal

Amnesty International has warned that the Tallaght man could face the death penalty if convicted.

Updated 4pm

A BAIL APPLICATION for Dubliner Ibrahim Halawa in Cairo has been refused and yet again his trial has been adjourned.

Halawa was due to appear in court today – more than a year-and-a-half after he was detained for taking part in a protest in the Egyptian capital. His trial has been postponed five times today, once again, it has been adjourned, this time until 6 June.

The Tallaght man has been held in Egypt since August 2013 after he was arrested at a mosque during a march protesting the ousting of former president Mohammed Morsi.

Speaking today after the bail application was refused, Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan said he was disappointed, as the application had been supported by the Irish government.

“Our objectives in this case remain clear – to see this young Irish citizen released by the Egyptian authorities, and to provide consular support while he remains in detention.

“With the Taoiseach’s full support, I remain committed to taking all appropriate action in pursuit of our two objectives towards achieving a positive outcome for this young Irishman and his family.”

The minister said he will meet tomorrow with Egyptian Foreign Minister Shoukry in New York.

Death penalty cell

Halawa’s sisters have been campaigning for his release – and his sister Fatima recently reported that her brother has been moved to a death penalty cell.

He has been designated a ‘prisoner of conscience’ by Amnesty International – and the human rights group has warned that he could face the death penalty if convicted.

Halawa’s sisters and opposition politicians have called on the Taoiseach to directly intervene in the situation, saying that after 600 days it was time for him to put pressure on Egyptian authorities.

‘Across the situation’

Earlier this month, a spokesperson for Enda Kenny said he was “across the situation and concerned” and that he was being kept up to date on the case by Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan.

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Former Justice Minister Alan Shatter has also thrown his support behind the Halawa sisters’ campaign to have their brother released.

“We have very good diplomatic relations with Egypt,” Shatter observed during a Late Late Show interview last month, adding:

I think now this has reached a point where we should question the nature of our diplomatic relations, if this continues on indefinitely.

Halawa is facing charges of murder, attempted murder and participating in an illegal protest.

Read: Trial postponed for fifth time as Ibrahim pleads ‘They’re killing me here, they’re torturing me

Read: ‘If we don’t do anything now, Ibrahim will die’

About the author:

Daragh Brophy

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