Alleged 'Black Bloc' members released pending investigation

Ahram Online, Thursday 9 May 2013

Eleven suspects deny being members of anti-Muslim Brotherhood 'Black Bloc' group, reject accusations that they attacked Islamist protesters near High Court in Cairo

A Cairo criminal court on Thursday released 11 alleged members of the radical opposition 'Black Bloc' group pending further investigation.

The suspects were accused of inciting violence and attacking Islamist protesters near the High Court in Cairo on 3 May.

During the court session, the suspects denied any involvement in the attacks and most insisted they were nowhere near the High Court when they were detained.

One suspect, identified only as “Gihan,” said that she was not near the High Court and was arrested while on her way to a lecture.

Five other suspects claimed they were sitting in a coffee shop twenty minutes away from the court. All of the suspects denied they were members of Black Bloc and some said they had only heard of it on television.

Members of the group allegedly threw Molotov cocktails at the courthouse and clashed with nearby street vendors.

Black Bloc made its first appearance on the eve of the second anniversary of Egypt's January 2011 revolution. Its primary aim is to fight the Muslim Brotherhood, from which President Mohamed Morsi hails. Members of the group typically dress in black and mask their faces.

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