EGYPT: Former Cabinet minister sentenced for corruption
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REPORTING FROM CAIRO -- Egypt’s once-untouchable former information minister was sentenced Wednesday to seven years in prison on corruption charges.
Anas Fiqqi’s case was the latest in a string of convictions against officials in the regime of former President Hosni Mubarak. Widespread anger over corruption in the high reaches of government was one of the issues that led protesters into the streets last winter to drive Mubarak from power.
The 83-year-old former president is being tried on charges of financial crimes and complicity to commit murder in the deaths of more than 800 protesters during the uprising last winter. His sons, Alaa and Gamal, also face corruption charges.
Other officials, including former Interior Minister Habib Adli and former Tourism Minister Zuheir Garana, have been convicted of corruption since the fall of the regime.
Fiqqi’s sentence came the same day that more than 18 political parties and groups have called for a million-man march in Tahrir Square on Friday to demand that Egypt’s military rulers provide a schedule for transferring power to a civilian government.
-- Jeffrey Fleishman