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Mass trial for killing of Egyptian police in Kerdasa resumes

One-hundred and eighty-eight people are on trial for the killing of 15 policemen in an attack on a police station in Kerdasa in August 2013

Ahram Online, Thursday 21 Aug 2014
Kerdasa
Police officers stand in front of a damaged police station in the village of Kerdasa (Photo: Reuters)
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The trial resumes on Thursday of 188 people accused of killing 15 policemen and attacking a police station in Kerdasa last summer.

The defendants are accused of terrorism, murder, damaging public property and possession of weapons.

Assailants, armed with firearms and RPGs, stormed a police station in Kerdasa in western Giza shortly after security forces killed hundreds of Mohamed Morsi supporters at protest camps in mid-August.

Fifteen policemen were tortured to death and some of the bodies were mutilated.

The attackers filmed the incident, known as the 'Kerdasa massacre', to "humiliate" the police, according to a statement by prosecutors.

A month later, in September, security forces launched a campaign to regain control of the area, an Islamist stronghold, during which Major General Nabil Farrag was killed and nine officers were wounded.

Twelve people were sentenced to death and ten to life imprisonment over the September violence.

Since Morsi's ouster, a security crackdown on his supporters has left hundreds killed and thousands in detention or facing trial. A wave of militant attacks – blamed by authorities on the Muslim Brotherhood and its allies – has also swept through the country, killing hundreds of policemen and soldiers.

In other mass trials over violent events that followed the breakup of pro-Morsi sit-ins in Cairo and Giza, defendants – believed to be Morsi supporters – have received mass death sentences.

In Minya, for example, 529 people were sentenced to death for vandalism and murder. The court later upheld 37 of the death sentences and commuted 492 others to life in prison.

The trial on Thursday is taking place at Giza criminal court. The presiding judge is Mohamed Nagi Shehata.

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