Prominent labour activist among 45 pretrial detainees released in Egypt
Egypt’s Public Prosecutor on Thursday decided to free prominent labour activist Haitham Mohammadein and 45 other pre-trial detainees, according to members of the presidential pardon committee.
Activist and labour rights lawyer Mohammadein was arrested in May 2019 on charges related to spreading fake news and joining an "illegal group".
Social media users posted pictures of Mohammadein on Twitter congratulating him on his release.
Lawyer and committee member Tareq Al-Awadi provided a list of those released in similar cases dating back to 2020 and 2021 on Facebook, thanking the presidency, judiciary, and ministry of interior for the decision.
Several dozen pretrial detainees have been freed in recent months since the work of the presidential pardon committee started in May.
The news comes hours after Egypt ordered the release of an Al Jazeera journalist held in pretrial detention, as President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi concluded his trip to Qatar on Wednesday.
Egypt's human rights record is regularly condemned, with groups saying there are 60,000 political prisoners, many held on charges of "spreading false news".
Cairo, where at least 20 journalists are behind bars, currently ranks 168th out of 180 countries in the press freedom index compiled by Reporters Without Borders.