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Egypt mass trials 'obscene' and 'travesty of justice': UN rights chief

Published on Jun 24, 2014 12:49 AM

GENEVA (AFP) - UN human rights chief Navi Pillay on Monday slammed Egypt's mass trials, which have led to at least 220 death sentences and seen journalists ordered to serve lengthy prison terms.

"I believe these mass trials and death penalty convictions are obscene, and a complete travesty of justice," Pillay said in a statement.

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said she was "shocked and alarmed" by the sentencing Monday of three Al-Jazeera journalists, including Australia's Peter Greste, and 11 others sentenced in absentia to up to a decade in prison.

Those verdicts, along with the confirmation Saturday by an Egyptian court of the death penalty for 183 Muslim Brotherhood members and supporters, are the latest in a line of court cases "rife with procedural irregularities and in breach with international human rights law," Pillay said.

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