A file photo of Patrick George Zaki in Italy (Photo: Facebook)
Egypt’s prosecution has referred on Monday Patrick George Zaki to the Mansura State Security Misdemeanor Court on charges of spreading false news inside Egypt and abroad.
George’s trial is set to start on Tuesday.
Zaki is accused of "broadcasting false news", "disturbing security and social peace," and using his Facebook account to "to promote the use of violence and terrorism," according to statements by the prosecutor's office.
A postgraduate student at Bologna University in Italy, Zaki is a researcher at the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR), a prominent rights organisation. Zaki was detained at Cairo International Airport on 7 February after he arrived for a family visit, his lawyers said at the time.
His arrest sparked condemnation in Italy, with calls for his release by rights organisations both at home and abroad, including a call for his immediate release from the European Union and European Parliament.