Washington, United States (4E) – Just hours after an Egyptian court ordered release of former President Hosni Mubarak from prison only to place him under house arrest, the United States on Thursday said that this was Egypt’s internal legal matter.
There were mixed reports on possible release of Mubarak with some said the ex-dictator might not be released before Sunday, while others expected him to be released by Thursday morning.
The authorities transferred the ex-dictator from Cairo’s Tora prison to house arrest at Maadi Military Hospital, said Mubarak’s lawyer on Thursday.
Despite the release, the court barred Mubarak from leaving the country and continued to keep his assets frozen.
Egypt had arrested Mubarak three years ago following the overthrow of his government in the first uprising in the country’s history.
It is amazing to see how Washington supported Mubarak and his policies during this 30-year rule until the Arab Spring of 2011. Following his ouster, Egypt elected Mohamed Morsi and Washington shifted its focus to the new democratically elected leader and urged him to bring reforms in the country.
However, the military ousted Morsi on July 3 and detained him at an undisclosed location, prompting Washington to call for his release.
State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki on Thursday reiterated her government’s calls to release Morsi, insisting that Washington’s position on Morsi would remain the same.
Psaki said, “To have an inclusive process moving forward, an inclusive political process, we believe all parties need to have the opportunity to participate. It’s hard to do that when there are several members of one being detained.”
Mubarak’s release coincidentally came on the same day when Robert Mugabe, 89, vowed to “observe, uphold and defend Zimbabwe’s Constitution”, while taking oath for another five-year-term as country’s president. This will be Mugabe’s historic seventh term in Zimbabwe.