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Egypt rejects Italy’s request to attend interrogations in Regeni case

Egypt rejected a request filed by Italian prosecutors asking permission to attend the interrogations of seven police officers who investigated researcher Giulio Regeni before his death, Italian news agency Ansa reported on Friday.

According to judicial sources cited by Ansa, although they were not permitted to attend the questioning Rome received a summary of the officers’ testimonies.

In April Italian investigators finalized a list of 10 politicians and officials who they accused of involvement in the 2016 killing of Regeni. The Italian researcher was in Cairo to do field research for his PhD thesis on independent unions in Egypt.

In April, Alessandra Ballerini, the Regeni family’s lawyer, said during a press conference that Regeni was killed in an area that falls under the control of an Egyptian security apparatus.

An Italian government source, who spoke to Mada Masr on condition of anonymity at the time, revealed that Italian investigators had initially prepared a list of 26 figures whom evidence implicates in the killing of Regeni, before paring this down to the final 10.

“Cairo doesn’t seem to be demonstrating the same willingness to collaborate with Rome,” the source said, “starting from attempts to hide the truth, through addressing moral accusations to Giulio, all the way to accusing five people who had nothing to do with Regeni’s murder and killing them in cold blood on the streets of the capital.”

The slain researcher disappeared at a metro station on January 25, 2016 as he was traveling from his apartment in Dokki to meet a friend in downtown Cairo. His body was found a few days later on February 3, naked and bearing signs of torture beside a highway on the outskirts of Cairo. Egyptian investigators admitted a few months later that they put Regeni under surveillance after they received a complaint from a representative of the street vendors syndicate who denounced him as a spy.

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