Former Egyptian Leader Mubarak Walks Free 6 Years after ‘Arab Spring’ Ouster

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is seen here as he was being transported on a trolley from the helicopter at the Police Academy on the outskirts of Cairo, Egypt, 02 March 2017, where his trial for allegedly conspiring to kill protesters during the 2011 uprising was taking place. Photo: Mohamed Hossam/EPA/REX/Shutterstock

  • Long-time Egyptian strongman Mubarak has been allowed to go home after over 6 years in custody.
  • He has been cleared of all charges with respect to the death of hundreds of protesters in 2011.
  • Mubarak has been transferred from a “five-star” military hospital to his residence in an upscale Cairo neighborhood.
  • Egypt’s current government is believed to have been unwilling to see him walk home free because of the potential public backlash.

Former long-time President of Egypt, Hosni Mubarak, has been fully freed from custody a little over 6 years after he was overthrown in the January 25 Revolution, one of the so called Arab Spring developments that shook the world.

88-year-old Mubarak, who ruled Egypt as President for 30 years, from 1981 until 2011, was acquitted earlier in March of charges over the death of protesters in the 2011 revolution.

Since 2013, following his toppling in the January 25, 2011, Revolution, Mubarak had been kept in custody in a “five-star” military hospital in Cairo.

Egypt, the largest Arab country by population, was one of the four states whose long-time leaders have been toppled by Arab Spring civil unrest, the other being Tunisia (where the “Arab Spring technically started on December 17, 2010), Libya, and Yemen.

The Arab Spring revolution in Syria has turned into a bloody and protracted civil war in which the regime of President Bashar al-Assad has managed to cling, largely thanks to outside help from Iran and Russia.

Back to Heliopolis

On Thursday, Hosni Mubarak left the Maadi Military Hospital for his home in the upscale suburb of Heliopolis, his lawyer announced, as cited by Egyptian daily Al-Ahram.

Mubarak was transferred to the Maadi Hospital from the Torah prison back in 2013.

Several months after he was brought down in 2011, Egypt’s long-time strongman was put on trial for his actions when he tried to suppress the mass Arab Spring protests that caused his overthrow.

Some 850 are believed to have died as a result of clashes Cairo, Alexandria, Suez, and other Egyptian cities during the 18 days of protests in the winter of 2011.

After he was found guilty of complicity in their murder back in 2012, Mubarak was initially sentenced to life in prison. Subsequently, however, he was retried, and in May 2015, he was acquitted, a ruling upheld by Egypt’s highest court for criminal litigation, the Court of Cassation, in early March 2017.

Mubarak’s sons Gamal and Alaa as well as his Minister of Interior Habib El-Adly, who faced the same charges, were also acquitted.

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is seen here waving to his supporters from the military hospital where he was detained, in Cairo, Egypt, 04 May 2016, on his birthday. Photo: Khaled Elfiqi/EPA/REX/Shutterstock

In May 2015, Egypt’s Criminal Court had ordered the acquittal of Mubarak, arguing that Mubarak had been brought before the court by the General Prosecutor’s Office 60 days after Habib El-Adly and other security chiefs, which nullified the case against him.

However, in March 2016, the Court of Cassation’s prosecution ordered the reopening of the murder case against Mubarak ruling that the General Prosecutor‘s Office had the right to raise charges against defendants at any time, and that the belated raising of charges against Mubarak had resulted from the unstable security situation in Egypt.

Mubarak in the Post-Mubarak Era

Egypt’s current government is headed by President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi who was the head of the country’s military intelligence under Mubarak.

Al-Sisi led the 2013 ouster of Islamist Mohammed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, who had been democratically elected President.

There have been reports that the Sisi government had been unwilling to see Mubarak walk free because of the potential public indication over the impunity of the long-time former state leader.

The former Egyptian President and his sons have been convicted of corruption, and are thus be banned from leaving the country. Recently, the attorney general of the East Cairo prosecution accepted Mubarak’s request to include time spent in prison pending trial as part of his sentence in the corruption case.

Hosni Mubarak was the fourth President of the Arab Republic of Egypt which was set up in 1952 after a military coup against the ruling monarch.

Before becoming President, Mubarak served in the Egyptian Air Force, and then as the Vice President of Egypt under Anwar Sadat who was assassinated by jihadists in 1981 after he made a peace treaty with Israel.

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