Mubarak's Unexpected Death Sentence?


Ayanna Nahmias, Editor-in-ChiefLast Modified: 14:41 PM EDT, 11 June 2012

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, Photo by Sun NewsCAIRO, Egypt - Hosni Mubarak is currently in intensive care following his decline in health since his 2 June 2012 conviction. Though currently incarcerated for life, this did not assuage the ire of family and friends of protesters who were brutally murdered during Mubarak’s crack down of the Arab Spring uprising. The citizens of Egypt had hoped that he and his top officials would be convicted of murder.

Had he been convicted of murder he would have automatically been sentenced to death. However, Mubarak was sentenced to the lessor punishment of life in prison. Immediately following the verdict he was transferred to Cairo’s Torah prison to begin serving his time.

Subsequent to his transfer, Mubarak’s health rapidly deteriorated to the point where it was rumored that he had died. His wife, former first lady Suzanne Mubarak, refuted this claim after visiting him, but did say that he is very ill and should be transferred back to the military hospital where he was housed since his April 2011 arrest. These requests have been repeatedly denied.

Per The Associated Press, officials stated that "The former president's health is in decline, but now it's stable in its deteriorated state." Since his wife's visit, Mubarak has suffered from "an irregular heartbeat and required assistance in breathing.” He has been moved to the Intensive Care Unit, however, his wife hasn't been able to see him again because of prison policy limiting the frequency with which prisons can receive visitors.

It is ironic that Mubarak should fear the Torah prison where his government routinely incarcerated dissidents. According to news sources, he broke down upon hearing the news of his transfer there to serve out his life sentence. It is a verdict that is contested by all parties – Mubarak who feels betrayed by the military government who ousted him, and the protesters who demanded his death and feel that through back room dealings the military acquiesced to a sentence of life imprisonment.

If, Mubarak is truly as ill as claimed, then the issue may ultimately become a moot point since he may soon die. His proximal death delivered by nature versus man yields the net result of another despot biting the dust.  If, however, the pronouncement of his early demise is a ruse, authorities should immediately return him to jail to serve out his sentence, thus providing a modicum of justice for Egyptian citizens who desired the ultimate punishment.

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