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Egypt President says will not interfere in judicial rulings, amid outcry over jailed journalists

Published on Jun 24, 2014 5:23 PM
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (centre) attends the graduation ceremony of the Air Force Academy in Cairo, in this June 22, 2014 picture provided by the Egyptian Presidency. Newly elected Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said on Tuesday, June 24, 2014, that he would not interfere with judicial verdicts, following an international outcry over lengthy prison sentences given to three Al-Jazeera journalists this week. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

CAIRO (AFP) - President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said on Tuesday Egypt’s authorities “will not interfere in judicial matters” a day after three Al-Jazeera journalists were jailed for between seven and 10 years.

The United States is leading calls for Mr Sisi to pardon the journalists working for the Qatar-based network who were convicted on Monday of aiding the blacklisted Muslim Brotherhood Islamist movement and “spreading false news”.

Eleven defendants tried in absentia, including one Dutch journalist and two British journalists, were given 10-year sentences.

A presidency official told AFP that Mr Sisi cannot legally pardon the journalists until a final court ruling after an appeal.

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