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Policemen trial adjourned as protesters destroy courtroom

The trial of 13 policemen accused of killing peaceful demonstrators was adjourned as protesters destroy courtroom

Ahram Online, Tuesday 3 May 2011
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A group of approximately 250 people destroyed the courtroom of the South Cairo Court after the judge adjourned the trial of 13 policemen accused of killing peaceful protesters during the 25 January Revolution.

Some of the martyrs’ relatives and friends congregated at the courtroom ahead of the opening session Tuesday. They kept calling for the death penalty for the defendants and chanted other anti-police slogans. 

After the session, some of the protesters tried to forcibly keep the accused policemen inside the courtroom before a brawl erupted. Some of the officers were slightly injured in the process.

Tensions escalated even further when the trial was postponed till June 5 and the court ordered the release of the defendants. 

No sooner had the protesters heard the verdict than they wreaked havoc in the courtroom.

The podium and seats were destroyed before military police contained the situation and arrested a number of the rioters. 

Central security forces also secured the courtroom to prevent further clashes.

In the early days of the 18 day revolt which resulted in the ousting of former president Hosni Mubarak, police forces used live rounds on demonstrators, causing the death of at least 600 unarmed civilians.

Several policemen were also accused by the protesters of being involved in the organized acts of terrorism that followed the police’s complete withdrawal from the streets several days into the revolution.

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