Cairo, 11 April (AKI) – Twenty people arrested on suspicion of taking part in the deadly New Year’s bombing of a Coptic Church in the port city of Alexandria have been freed from prison, according to Egyptian newspaper Al-Dustur.
The release of the suspects was ordered by general Mohammed Hussein Tantawi, part of the military council that took power in February after nationwide anti-government protests ousted president Hosni Mubarak after around 30 years in power, the report said.
Twenty-four people were killed and around 100 injured during the bombing that sparked rioting and protests and drew international condemnation.
Coptic Christians account for about 10 percent of Egypt’s population.
At least one of those freed claim to be have been detained to silence his criticism of the the state.
Ibrahim Ibata says he was arrested because he claimed his friend was killed by police during an interrogation.
Some of the suspects have called a press conference for Thursday during which they are expected to describe their alleged torture in prison.