Egyptian lawyers call for investigation into deaths of 37 Islamists

August 19, 2013 21:21

CAIRO - Egyptian lawyers called on Monday for an international investigation into the deaths in police custody of 37 supporters of Islamist President Mohamed Morsi.

A coroner's report said the men died from suffocation after police used teargas to stop a mass escape on Sunday while a group of more than 600 suspects were being transported to the Abu Zabal prison on the outskirts of Cairo.Photos provided by the lawyers representing the detainees show dead bodies with charred faces and limbs and others covered in bruises which the lawyers said were signs of torture. Details of the incident remain unclear, they said.

"Neutral investigation committees must be formed, not Egyptian ones ... The real crisis is that the judiciary body is providing a veil to cover those who violate the law and sanction bloodshed," said Ahmed Abu Baraka, one of the lawyers representing the 600 detainees.

Security officials denied accusations of foul play during Sunday's incident.

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