Egyptian politician jailed for going to Gaza

A military tribunal on Wednesday convicted an opposition lawmaker of illegally crossing into Gaza and sentenced him to two years in prison and $1,000 dollars fine, an Egyptian court official said. The secretary general of the banned Labor party, Magdi Hussein, was arrested Jan. 31 after trying to re-enter Egypt from Gaza without a passport. The judicial official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the press, said Hussein was convicted of using an underground tunnel to cross into Gaza. Defense lawyer Mohammed Moneib said Hussein was deprived of his right to defend himself as no lawyers were permitted into the trial. Egypt's military tribunals are known for their swift verdicts.