Egypt: Mubarak retrial delayed after judge quits


Ex-Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak sits behind bars at the beginning of his retrial in Cairo on April 13, 2013. The presiding judge withdrew himself from the trial a few minutes after its opening.

The retrial of deposed Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, who faces charges over the deaths of protesters during the 2011 Arab Spring uprising, has been delayed, possibly by months, after the presiding judge withdrew himself from the trial just minutes after its opening on Saturday morning.

The reasons Judge Mostafa Hassan Abdallah recused himself from the retrial are not clear. The Washington Post said the judge was hearing another case related to the 2011 uprising, while CNN, citing Mubarak's lawyer, said he quit due to a medical condition.

Abdallah referred the case to Cairo appeals court, which will appoint a new panel of judges to hear the case.

More from GlobalPost: Protesters marking 2 years since Hosni Mubarak ouster clash with Egyptian forces

His announcement sparked angry scenes at the police academy on the outskirts of Cairo where the retrial was being held.

Mubarak, who has health problems and had arrived at the court on a stretcher, was flown by helicopter back to a military hospital. 

The former president and several former security officials have been charged over the deaths of protesters during the 18-day Arab Spring uprising against his rule.

He was convicted and sentenced to life in jail after a 10-month trial in 2012, but another judge overturned that decision in January and ordered a retrial.

More from GlobalPost: New trial for Egypt's Hosni Mubarak

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