Egypt still long way from justice over uprising deaths, says Amnesty
New report urges greater accountability among government and military for 'flagrant disregard for life' during anti-Mubarak rallies
Egypt still has a "mountain to climb" in the battle to achieve justice for the hundreds killed by security forces in this year's anti-Mubarak uprising, according to a new report by Amnesty International.
The government response to public rallies against Mubarak displayed a "flagrant disregard for life", claims the human rights NGO, citing the deliberate shooting of protesters in the head and chest when they were posing no threat.
According to Egypt's ministry of health, at least 840 people died in the uprising and more than 6,000 were injured.
But the Amnesty report says there has not been enough accountability for the violence, highlighting the fact that the official commission did not investigate claims of arbitrary detention and torture by the Egyptian military, whose senior generals are currently ruling Egypt by decree.
"People want real change, they want justice and they want human rights," said Amnesty UK's director Kate Allen, who warned that the continued use of military courts raises questions about the army's commitment to the rule of law in post-Mubarak Egypt.
"When I was in Egypt last month, people were telling me that after all the suffering and sacrifice of the uprising there can be no going back to the old days," she said.
"This comprehensive report makes it abundantly clear that there's still a mountain to climb in terms of achieving justice for the brave protesters of Egypt's uprising."
An official fact-finding commission launched by Egypt's interim government to investigate the protests concluded last month that the interior ministry was responsible for the deaths of protesters.
Former interior minister Habib al-Adly has been charged with economic fraud and unlawful killing; his trial is due to begin on Saturday, and a guilty verdict could carry the death penalty.
The report comes as Egypt's ruling generals vehemently denied they were considering offering Mubarak a reprieve from prosecution in exchange for the 82-year-old returning illicit assets and apologising to the nation.
Egyptian newspapers have claimed that Mubarak, currently under arrest at his hospital bed in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, was preparing to read a statement to state TV expressing sorrow at any "misconduct" that arose from him receiving bad advice from aides.
Mubarak is currently being investigated on charges of corruption and ordering the unlawful killing of civilians, prompting speculation that the apology was part of a plea bargain that would enable the former leader to avoid punishment.
Reports suggested that the compromise was being mediated by the Arab gulf monarchies, including Saudi Arabia whose government strongly opposed Mubarak's incarceration.
On Tuesday, Mubarak's wife Suzanne was released from detention after agreeing to hand back $4m (£2.5m) worth of assets to the state.
The couple's two sons remain behind bars, alongside more than 20 other high-ranking ministers and businessmen linked with the old regime.
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