Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has been acquitted on charges of corruption and killing protesters during the 2011 uprising on Saturday, in the final verdict in a lengthy retrial which has stretched for months.
Mubarak and his former interior minister Habib al-Adly were sentenced to life in prison in June of 2012 for failing to prevent the deaths of over 800 protesters during the 18-day uprising that began on January 25, 2011. Mubarak ruled Egypt for almost 30 years before being ousted in the uprising.
The court later accepted Mubarak’s appeal and ordered a retrial, but the former President remained behind bars because other corruption charges were filed against him. In August, following the ouster of Mubarak’s successor Mohammed Morsi, an Egyptian court ordered Mubarak’s release, after these charges were dismissed.
Mubarak was subsequently released from prison and taken to a military International Medical Center.
The current retrial began in April 2013, and has been adjourned several times since. The verdict has originally been due to be given in September of this year, but was postponed after the judge stated that he needed more time to examine some 160,000 pages of evidence.
On Saturday, Mubarak stated in a brief phone interview with Egyptian television that he "didn't commit anything."
"I laughed when I heard the first verdict," he said of the first trial to Sada ElBalad TV. "When it came to the second verdict, I said I was waiting. It would go either way. It wouldn't have made a difference to me either way."
Protests have erupted in Cairo's Tahrir Square following the verdict, international news media reports Saturday night.