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Egypt cancels June 30 celebrations, mourns prosecutor's killing

world Updated: Jun 30, 2015 09:34 IST
Egypt celebrations


Egypt has cancelled celebrations marking the second anniversary of the June 30 revolution which ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, as the country mourns the killing of prosecutor general Hisham Barakat .

"Celebrations will be cancelled as the country mourns Egyptian General Prosecutor Hisham Barakat, who was assassinated on Monday," a statement by the presidency said.

"Egypt has lost a great judicial figure who has shown dedication to work and commitment to the ethics of the noble judicial profession," the statement said.

Earlier on Monday, Egypt had declared Tuesday as an official holiday to mark the second anniversary of the June 30 Egyptian revolution which marks the beginning of mass protests against Morsi that instigated his ouster in 2013.

A military funeral will be held for 65-year-old Barakat.

President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi is expected to participate in the funeral with other political and public figures, sources said.

Barakat, who had referred thousands of Islamists to trial in recent months, was killed after militants targeted his convoy in a powerful bomb attack, the senior-most official to be assassinated since violence erupted following Morsi's ouster.

He died of injuries sustained in the revenge attack by Islamist militants that targeted his convoy near his house in Misr el-Gedida district in Cairo.

Nine people, including two drivers, one civilian and five members of the security forces, were injured when the bomb hit the prosecutor's convoy near the military academy in Heliopolis, according to health ministry spokesperson Hossam Abdel-Ghaffar.

Sisi met with Interior Minister Magdy Abdel-Ghaffar after the attack, asking the ministry to tighten security and find the perpetrators of the attack.

Barakat was sworn in as Egypt's top prosecutor under the rule of interim president Adly Mansour in July 2013 following the resignation of Abdel-Meguid Mahmoud.

Meanwhile, judge Zakaria Abd El-Aziz Osman, the assistant Prosecutor General, has been appointed as Egypt's acting Prosecutor General, a judicial source said.