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Maikel Nabil Sanad - © Christopher Schwarzkopf
Egypt: Trial of hunger striking blogger delayed until 11 October
by Almasry Alyoum
The Supreme Military Court of Appeals postponed on Tuesday the appeal of Maikel Nabil Sanad until 11 October. Sanad, a blogger sentenced to three years in prison for his online writings, is on the 43rd day of a hunger strike.
A military trial sentenced Sanad on 10 April for writing blog posts critical the military and its performance during the 25 January uprising.
The military court charged the 25-year-old blogger with “insulting the armed forces,” “publishing false news,” and “disturbing public security.”
Negad al-Borey, Sanad’s lawyer, told Al-Masry Al-Youm that the session was adjourned because the judge said the official court documents were not in proper order.
Borey added that this is the court’s, not any lawyers’, responsibility.
“The court is deliberately obstructing the case. The judge could have easily adjourned the session for an hour and sent someone to go get the files from the upper floor of the court,” said Borey.
Sanad’s brother, Mark, said Maikel has decided to step up his hunger strike and will now refuse water.
“This delay is a death penalty for Maikel. This is not fair. They will kill him,” said Mark.
Nabil has lost 15 kilograms since his hunger strike began and his health has been deteriorating, as he suffers from anemia, scabies and kidney illness, according to the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information.
In a note reportedly smuggled out of jail last month and then posted on Facebook, Sanad wrote, "I won’t kneel for injustice and I’ll die with my dignity, and that’s more honorable to me than a life with no dignity."
“We presented many pleas for the court to at least transfer him to a hospital but all was in vain. They are being inhumane in dealing with Maikel. It’s outrageous,” said Borey.
Meanwhile, three journalists and one of Sanad’s supporters were arrested by military police and had their cameras confiscated for videotaping the protest outside of the court, where tens gathered in support of Sanad.
“It is very obvious that the military is indifferent about this. They are underestimating the danger of the situation. They want to let him die so that they can say that he committed suicide,” said Noor Ayman Nour, a member of the No Military Trials for Civilians advocacy group.
Almasry Alyoum: Trial of hunger striking blogger delayed until 11 October. October 4, 2011. Source: www.almasryalyoum.com/en/node/501771