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Egypt’s prosecutor agrees to release former President Hosni Mubarak from Detention

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President Hosni Mubarak, VOA

Cairo, March 14, 2017: The Egyptian general prosecutor’s office ordered the release of former President Hosni Mubarak from detention, after he was acquitted of charges of killing protesters during the 2011 revolution that led to his ouster, media reports said.

Efe news agency cited a report by state-run Middle East News Agency on Monday which stated that the general prosecution ordered Mubarak’s acquittal after deducting the period of his pre-trial detention, which started in April 2011.

After he was convicted in 2015 for seizing public funds through embezzling money specified for presidential palaces, the prosecution considered that the period he spent behind bars in pre-trial exceeds the time that he was supposed to spend in line with the court’s verdict.

On March 2, a court ruling cleared Mubarak of charges holding him responsible for giving orders to kill 239 demonstrators during the January 2011 revolution.

The ruling is final as it was Mubarak’s second retrial, which cannot be appealed, after he was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2012, and then acquitted of the same charges two years later. (IANS)

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Australia’s Maribyrnong Detention Center Gets Closed

The ruling Liberal-led coalition has faced fierce public opposition to its harsh immigration policies, including the use of unpopular offshore detention camps.

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The Melbourne, Australia, skyline is seen June 2, 2010. VOA

Australia announced the closure of Melbourne’s controversial Maribyrnong detention center Wednesday, one of several facilities used to lock up immigrants who arrived without papers.

The government said the decision to close the much-criticized facility was “another milestone in the ramping-down of Australia’s onshore immigration detention network.”

Maribyrnong opened in the middle of the last century, but has recently been the site of hunger strikes and other protests over harsh treatment.

In 2017, the Australian Human Rights Commission — a government body — reported guards at the facility used “more restrictive measures than necessary,” including the excessive use of restraints during escort.

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FILE – Protestors against asylum seekers being deported, gather for a rally in Sydney, Australia, Feb. 4, 2016. VOA

The few remaining inmates have now been transferred to other facilities.

Immigration Minister David Coleman said successful policies had reduced the number of people held at Australia’s immigration detention centers from a peak of 10,000 in 2013 to just over a thousand today.

Also Read: An ‘Underwater Garden’ Gets Revealed In Australia

Around 19 facilities have been shuttered since September 2013 — as the government looks to elections that will take place by the end of May and intense debate over immigration policies.

The ruling Liberal-led coalition has faced fierce public opposition to its harsh immigration policies, including the use of unpopular offshore detention camps. (VOA)