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AFP

Cairo court affirms death for 7 Copts over anti-Islam film

An Egyptian on top of the US embassy in Cairo protesting against a film deemed offensive to Islam. (AFP/Khaled Desouki)

A Cairo tribunal on Tuesday upheld death sentences passed on seven Egyptian Coptic Christians in absentia for their involvement in a movie that ridiculed the Prophet Mohammed, a judicial source said.

 

The accused, including the director of the movie that triggered outrage across the Muslim world when it surfaced last September, are currently living in the United States.

 

Terry Jones, an American pastor based in Florida who is said to have promoted the film and who had also been sentenced to death in absentia, had his sentence reduced to five years in jail by the tribunal.

 

Egyptian courts usually hand out the maximum punishment -- execution in this case for a blasphemy verdict -- and send the decision to the state's top Islamic scholar to get his approval.

 

Tuesday's confirmation of the sentences occurred after his opinions were taken.

 

If the defendants do return to Egypt, they could get a new trial, according to legal experts.

 

The movie, in which the Prophet Mohammed is depicted as a buffoon and pedophile, sparked a wave of angry protests across the Middle East in which more than 30 people were killed.

An Egyptian on top of the US embassy in Cairo protesting against a film deemed offensive to Islam. (AFP/Khaled Desouki)

If the defendants do return to Egypt, they could get a new trial, according to legal experts.

  • UKMarmar

    And this is why you will never develop intellectual or thoughtful thinking! And this is also why you are hardly likely in this lifetime to have civil society So what if someone ridicules Islam, you ridicule it yourselves with your own reactions. Why not present an intelligent alternative - ... !

    February 22, 2013

  • terry.niebauer.3

    does anyone care what the muslims think or decide

    February 19, 2013

  • Rinzler718

    Islam the religion of death!

    February 19, 2013

  • diana.l.braddock

    It is not okay to kill someone over something you hear or see. Who ever killed those people because of a video should be sentanced to death, not the film maker. That is like saying the spoon made me eat it.

    February 19, 2013