Bar of Ireland committee expresses concerns over detention of Ibrahim Halawa in Egypt

Ibrahim's trial was adjourned for the 17th time yesterday

Bar of Ireland committee expresses concerns over detention of Ibrahim Halawa in Egypt

Ibrahim Halawa is seen in this undated photo | Image: © Somaia Halawa

The Bar of Ireland's Human Rights Committee has expressed its concern over the detention of Irish citizen Ibrahim Halawa in Egypt.

Mr Halawa, from Firhouse in Dublin, has been held in an Egyptian jail since his arrest during demonstrations against the ousting of president Mohammed Morsi in August 2013. He was 17 at the time of his arrest.

Ibrahim - who is facing a mass trial with hundreds of other defendants - had his trial adjourned for the 17th time yesterday, the same day as his 21st birthday.

He is due back in court on January 17th.

In a statement today, the committee of the Bar of Ireland - which represents barristers - said the latest delay means that that Ibrahim "will have been in pre-trial detention for almost three and a half years in breach of his right to a trial without undue delay in accordance with international human rights norms and conventions".

"The Committee also has concerns as to the vindication of his right to a fair trial in circumstances where it is understood that he is to be tried concurrently with several hundred other accused."

The statement adds that the committee "notes with serious concern the issues raised by NGOs with a presence on the ground in Egypt about the conditions and circumstances of Mr Halawa’s detention and welcomes plans for an upcoming visit by a delegation of members of the Oireachtas".

Yesterday, Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan insisted: “The Irish Government remains determined to see Ibrahim Halawa return to his family in Ireland and we will not relent in our efforts with the Egyptian authorities to secure Ibrahim’s release."