“This case is important for all Egyptians,” one of the investigating judges bellowed over the din in the courtroom jammed with family and supporters of the accused and dozens of journalists.
The U.S. government has repeatedly told Egypt that the charges are outrageous, and that the NGOs, including the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute, were operating to assist Egyptians in their transition to democracy.
Members of the U.S. Congress, including Senator John McCain who flew to Cairo earlier this month, have threatened that if the American citizens are not acquitted it is highly unlikely that Congress will approve next year’s U.S. aid package to Egypt of $1.55-billion.
Judge Mahmud Mohamed Shukry adjourned the trial until April 26 at the end of the session in the rowdy chamber, where television reporters crowded around him and an interior ministry official threatened to expel journalists.
His decision could give more time for a diplomatic solution to the case, lawyers said.
For more: Egypt’s charges against democracy activists set stage for U.S. showdown - The Globe and Mail