CAIRO -- Two Canadian nationals who endured a seven-week prison ordeal in Egypt were on their way home on Friday, media in their home country reported.
"We cannot wait to see our families, who will be waiting for us … where we can share hugs, tears and laughs privately," the two said in a pre-departure statement, according to the CBC. "We can't wait!"
The men were detained Aug. 16, as street clashes raged in Cairo between Egyptian security forces and supporters of Islamist President
In a jailhouse letter last month, the pair described beatings, a cockroach-infested cell, interrogations and being forced to sleep on bare, filthy floors, with no access to clean drinking water. Egyptian detainees endured the same harsh treatment, they said.
The coup that deposed Morsi, and a subsequent bloody crackdown on his supporters that left hundreds dead, led to a U.S. decision this week to suspend hundreds of millions of dollars worth of military aid to Egypt. The Obama administration said the suspension could be lifted if the interim government takes steps toward democratization.
Morsi has been imprisoned since he was deposed on July 3, and Egyptian authorities had announced this week that he would be put on trial next month. Most senior leaders of his
The case of Greyson and Loubani became a cause celebre in Canada, where supporters launched a petition drive, set up a website and enlisted celebrities to speak out on behalf of the two. Relatives said during their time in jail, they were unaware of the high-profile campaign that had been taking place.