Patrick Zaki, hearing postponed to April 6

from Marta Serafini

The Mansoura court, the same one that had released the Egyptian researcher and activist in December, has decided on yet another postponement

Not over, however Patrick Zaki
. The Mansoura court today decided on the postponement, yet another of the complex trial involving the Egyptian researcher and activist. The next hearing scheduled for April 6. In the meantime, Zaki won’t have to go back to jail. The judge has decided to postpone the decision to April 6, for now I am free and this is good, said the researcher on leaving the court. My hope that in April there will be a positive outcome because I want to return to Bologna soon and resume my studies. I think they want to take some time for the final decision – we’ll see what happens.

Zaki entered the Mansoura Courthouse shortly after 10. Waiting for the judge, state placed in the prison cell for half an hour, the cell inside the court, together with a common prisoner. A very bad feeling, she said later.

Lthe hearing took place behind closed doors. Apart from judges, only the accused and his lawyers were present, including the trusted lawyer of the Italian embassy. At the hearing, at the explicit request of Italy, they were also present in Mansoura diplomats from Italy, the USA, Germany, Spain and Belgium, as well as a lawyer representing the European Union. The diplomatic delegation has insisted on entering the courtroom and attending the hearing, but the Egyptian authorities have not given the green light. Even the press was not allowed to enter the court.

The Egyptian researcher and activist, a student at the University of Bologna, was released from prison by the Cairo authorities on December 8, 2021, after almost two years of pre-trial detention. But the accusations against him – incitement to violence, protests, terrorism, management of a social account that would have the purpose of undermining public safety and then also spreading false news – remained standing.

The other night I dreamed that I was free, for real, Zaki confessed on the eve of the sentence. His advocate, Hoda Nasrallahhe had defined the decisive session: I have aces up my sleeve, he had declared.

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