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Egypt detains Mubarak and sons

Egypt has officially detained former President Hosni Mubarak during inquiries into accusations of corruption, abuse of authority and the killings of protesters during the uprising that removed him from power.

A separate announcement said Mubarak's two sons were detained for questioning in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, where the family has lived since the president's removal on February 11. The sons, Gamal and his businessman brother Alaa, were transferred to a Cairo prison.

The announcements were the latest in a dramatic series of events surrounding the probes against top former regime officials, and came just hours after Mubarak, 82, was hospitalised with heart problems in Sharm el-Sheikh.

Mr Mubarak is to remain in the hospital during his 15-day detention.

Since Mubarak's overthrow, Egyptians have been calling for an investigation into their ruler of more than 30 years, along with many members of his government.

A statement from the prosecutor general's office announcing Mubarak's detention said the investigation was into allegations of assaults, killings and injury of protesters, corruption, squandering of public funds, and the abuse of authority for personal gain.

Most of the top officials of Mubarak's regime are now being investigated.

The probe is also seen as a way to help amend weeks of souring relations between the protest movement and the Egyptian military, which took control after Mubarak was toppled. The protesters say the investigations are slow, and are outweighed by rights abuses by the new rulers.

They have also criticised the army for being too close to the old regime and not swiftly bringing Mubarak to trial while hundreds of protesters remain in military detention following a demonstration last month.

Hundreds are estimated to have been killed during the protests as police opened fire and cracked down on the crowds. Officials put the number of protesters killed during the uprising at 365, but human rights activists and others have said the figure is much higher. According to a count by the Front to Defend Egypt Protesters, a group that provides medical and legal assistance to the demonstrators, 685 people died.


From Belfast Telegraph