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Egyptian journalist shot in December clashes was hit by 'professional': Report

A forensic report on the death of journalist El-Husseini Abu-Deif, shot during clashes last December, says sophisticated ammunition was used

Ahram Online , Tuesday 14 May 2013
El-Husseini Abu-Deif
Egyptian journalist El-Husseini Abu-Deif
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An independent forensic reports suggests that Egyptian journalist El-Husseini Abu-Deif, who died in hospital after being injured in clashes in December, was probably killed by a bullet fired by a “professional.”

Negad El-Borai, a human rights activist and head of human rights NGO the United Group, said that the bullet that hit Abu-Deif during clashes outside the presidential palace in Cairo was “highly developed,” reported Ahram’s Arabic news website.

Speaking at a press conference held on Tuesday to present an advisory forensics report on the journalist’s death prepared by the United Group, El-Borai stated that the bullet that penetrated El-Husseini’s skull was a “dum-dum” or expanding bullet, which changes form inside the victim's body.

The advisory report says, however, that the change of form of the bullet makes it impossible to identify its calibre or the weapon which fired it. El-Borai asserted that expanding bullets are prohibited by international law.

Fakhri Saleh, former head of the justice ministry's forensics department, wrote the advisory report.

Despite the highly developed ammunition used to kill El-Husseini, El-Borai said that the state had not taken any action to identify the perpetrators, and argued that there had been an intentional neglect of the case with the aim of shelving it.  

As the legal representatives of Abu-Deif's family, El-Borai said the United Group would pursue the issue and asked for an independent investigation judge to be appointed to look into the case.

He also requested that the advisory forensics report be recognised in official investigations.

Abu-Deif, a photojournalist for Al-Fagr newspaper, was critically injured last December during clashes between President Mohamed Morsi's supporters and protesters opposing him.

The Muslim Brotherhood contend that Abu-Deif was killed by "paid thugs." Mahmoud Abdel-Kader Mahmoud, who was with Abu-Deif when he was shot, has said that the pair were facing the president's supporters at the time.

The first forensic report was inconclusive, and critics argued that it ignored key eye witness testimony.

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