Egypt s Interior Ministry headquarters in downtown Cairo (Reuters)
In a post on his Facebook account, Abdel-Aziz — who is also deputy chairperson of the Human Rights Committee in the House of Representative — said: “Praise be to God... Within 24 hours or so, a new group of imprisoned youths will be released.”
He also revealed that other groups will be released afterwards, expressing his thanks to Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi and all concerned parties.
The committee, which was first formed in 2016, was reactivated by the president in late April during the annual Egyptian Family Iftar Banquet.
The re-activated committee started its work in late April, receiving the names of prisoners to be considered for presidential pardoning from various parties and political forces, the National Council for Human Rights (NCHR), the Human Rights Committee of the House of Representatives, and families, as well as directly through its own official website.
The scope of the work of the re-activated committee has been expanded to include imprisoned male and female debtors.
According to the Egyptian constitution, the president can issue pardons for prisoners that received final court rulings.
Egyptian presidents traditionally issue pardons several times a year, usually on major national and religious holidays.
The pardon committee now comprises Abdel-Aziz, MP Tarek El-Kholy, former member of the 2016 committee Karim El-Sakka, human rights lawyer Tarek El-Awady, and Egypt’s former minister of manpower Kamal Abu Eita.
More than 4,000 prisoners were granted presidential pardons in April and May on the occasion of Eid El-Fitr and Sinai Liberation Day.
Among those were prominent Egyptian political activist and Karama Party member Hossam Mones, who was released on Sinai Liberation Day.