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Egyptian photojournalist to be released

AWARD-WINNING Egyptian photo journalist Mahmoud Abu Zeid is set to be released from prison following five years in pre-trial detention after a court ruling on Saturday.

The year-long trial of survivors of the 2013 Rabaa massacre ended with an Egyptian court ratifying the death sentences of 75 people related to the Muslim Brotherhood. 

Mr Zeid was sentenced to five years in prison, the length of time he has already served waiting for the case to come to court.

Around 900 people were killed by Egyptian security officers at two peaceful protests at Rabaa and Nahda Squares in Cairo in August 2013.

The massacre took place just weeks after the Egyptian army ousted the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohammed Morsi who came to power in the country’s first free presidential elections.

Those charged were convicted of murder and inciting violence during the protests with many claiming they were targeted due to their membership of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Prominent leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood, including Essam Erian, Mohamed Beltagi, Issam Aryan and Safwat Hijazi were sentenced to death by hanging with many more receiving life imprisonment.

Mr Zeid, who was covering the demonstrations as a journalist, received a lesser sentence of five years following international pressure. 

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