Mohamed al-Zawahiri appeals death sentence

May 17, 2011 at 4:02 PM
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CAIRO, May 17 (UPI) -- Mohamed al-Zawahiri, brother of al-Qaida's top leader, announced he filed an appeal against his death sentence by a military court in Egypt.

Zawahiri was sentenced to death following his extradition from the United Arab Emirates to Egypt in 1999. He announced from prison that he was asking for an appeal in the hopes of being retried, complaining he was sentenced in absentia.

He protested that he was "promised" that his case could be dealt with in part because he felt he was a victim of the regime of deposed President Hosni Mubarak. He claimed he was treated "in a brutal manner" by members of the former regime, Egyptian daily newspaper Al-Masry Al-Youm reports.

Around 300 protesters gathered in front of the Defense Ministry to protest his arrest in March. He was released at the time but was quickly returned to custody.

Omar Suleiman, Egypt's former intelligence chief, offered to provide his U.S. counterparts with the arm of Zawahiri to be used as DNA evidence, The Daily Telegraph newspaper in London reported last week.

Ayman al-Zawahiri is rumored to be considered as the next leader for al-Qaida after Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in a May 2 raid in Pakistan.

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