Trump welcomes aid worker freed after years in Egyptian jail
- Author: Ryan Wade Apr 22, 2017,
Apr 22, 2017, 1:43
Aya Hijazi, 30, was flown back to the USA on Thursday night with her family on a USA government jet.
A graduate of Virginia's George Mason University, Hijazi moved to Cairo with her husband, Mohamed Hassanein.
"We urge the Government of Egypt to build on this important first step by releasing all those who have been wrongly imprisoned, upholding its global human rights obligations, and respecting the Egyptian people's right to freedom of expression and rule of law", they said in a statement. Hijazi was released from jail on Tuesday.
"The case of Aya Hijazi and her co-defendants has been nothing less than a travesty of justice", Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director for Human Rights Watch, said in late March after yet another trial delay. -Egyptian citizen, is acquitted by an Egyptian court after almost three years of detention over accusations related to running a foundation dedicated to helping street children, Cairo, Sunday, April 16, 2017.
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A source said told the celebrity news website, "They just did it the way they wanted to and did what was best for their kids". Ben bravely opened up about his alcohol addiction back in March earlier this year, having spent some time away in rehab.
Her release was reportedly agreed before Mr Trump met Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi this month.
"We are very happy to have her back home", Trump said. He tells NPR that Sissi's visit came during a short window of time before the final verdict in Hijazi's case.
A hearing was delayed seven times during the course of three years. "Whether it's street children in Egypt or for any causes, once they're back on their feet, they'll be committed and working to make the world a better place".
Hijazi was accompanied by her brother, Basel.
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Aya Hijazi, an Egyptian who holds USA citizenship, was acquitted by a Cairo court on Sunday along with seven others who had worked with street children.
But when authorities read the accusations of physical and sexual abuse of the children, "that's when she started crying". The couple's Egyptian legal team "completely eviscerated any shred of doubt that they were not guilty", McMullen says.
"As you can imagine, they're overjoyed, they're stunned", McMullen of the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organization told NPR.
"She faced the same political repression many defenders of human rights face", they wrote. "These last 72 hours have been understandingly overwhelming but they're in good spirits ..."
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As the founders of the Belady Foundation, a non-governmental organization that looks after Cairo street children, Hijazi and her husband were arrested in 2014 as part of Sisi's crackdown on those opposing him as well as more liberal and secular activists.