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Dublin: 11 °C Thursday 21 March, 2019

Ibrahim Halawa set for court tomorrow - his 21st birthday

His trial has been delayed 16 times since his initial incarceration in 2013.

Image: Free Ibrahim Halawa via Facebook

IRISH STUDENT IBRAHIM Halawa will face court in Egypt tomorrow, his 21st birthday.

His trial has been delayed 16 times since his initial incarceration in 2013.

He was arrested and detained at a protest in Cairo in August 2013. The demonstration was in support of the Muslim Brotherhood which had been ousted from power by the Egyptian military.

His three sisters were released from prison in November, 2013.

The Egyptian authorities have chosen to try Halawa in a mass trial along with almost 500 other people, a decision that has led to the repeated postponements.

UK charity Reprieve, which has worked with Halawa since his imprisonment, says that hundreds of people have been sentenced to death since President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi took power in Egypt in 2013. They also claim child arrests, torture and enforced ‘disappearances’ are common. Last week, human rights activists in Egypt told reporters that state repression had reached ‘chilling’ levels.

The Department of Foreign Affairs last month said that Halawa was not among 82 people freed from an Egyptian prison. They added that the government is working to secure his release.

“The Irish Government is continuing in our determined and sustained efforts to see Ibrahim returned to Ireland.”

Halawa wrote a letter to Ireland at the start of the month, saying that if he dies in jail, he wants to be buried in Ireland.

Read: ‘I just can’t understand why they have kidnapped me away from you’: Ibrahim Halawa’s letter to Ireland

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