Egypt's top prosecutor heads to Cyprus to discuss extradition of plane hijacker

Ahram Online , Wednesday 15 Jun 2016

Nabil Sadek
Snapshot from State TV of Nabil Sadek as he was sworn-in as prosecutor-general by President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, 19 September 2015

Egypt's top prosecutor Nabil Sadek flew Wednesday to Cyprus to discuss the extradition of an Egyptian man who hijacked a domestic EgyptAir flight and redirected it to the Mediterranean island last March.

The prosecutor-general, along with other Egyptian judicial officials, will follow up on the latest developments in the probe of the hijacking by 59-year-old Seif Eddin Mostafa, who has been described by Cypriot authorities as "psychologically unstable."

Sadek is scheduled to meet with a number of Cypriot officials in the southern city of Larnaca to discuss the extradition of Mostafa to Egypt so he can face trial, state news agency MENA said.

A Cypriot court is looking into the extradition matter, and proceedings in the case have been adjourned until June 17.

Mostafa is fighting extradition, arguing he would not receive a fair trial in Egypt and could face torture or be given the death penalty.

Cypriot authorities have rejected his request for political asylum, deeming him a "perpetrator of serious crimes."

Mostafa is accused of using a fake suicide belt to seize the plane, which was en route to Cairo from Alexandria, and diverting it to Cyprus on 29 March.  

He was arrested when he stepped off the plane after all 55 passengers on board were released unharmed following a six-hour standoff.

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