Video: MLAs join call for release of Dubliner Ibrahim Halawa imprisoned in Egypt

ASSEMBLY members have joined calls for the release of a Dublin man awaiting trial after three years in prison in Egypt.

Ibrahim Halawa from Firhouse was arrested in Cairo as part of a crackdown against protesters in August 2013.

The 20-year-old is due to face a mass trial alongside almost 500 defendants on Saturday after previous court dates were postponed on 15 occasions. He faces the death penalty if found guilty.

Sinn Féin, SDLP, Alliance and People Before Profit assembly members joined Mr Halawa's sister Khadija Halawa and representatives of Amnesty International on the steps of Stormont on Tuesday in a show of solidarity.

Amnesty said it had conducted a "thorough review of the prosecution evidence and concluded that Ibrahim could not have committed the violent crimes with which he has been charged".

Mr Halawa was arrested along with his three sisters in a mosque near Cairo's Ramses Square as the Muslim Brotherhood held a "day of rage" over the removal of their elected president Mohamed Morsi.

The family insisted they were taking refugee from the protests. His sisters were later released from custody and returned to Ireland, but Mr Halawa, remains imprisoned.

Patrick Corrigan from Amnesty, said: "We welcome the support of members of the Northern Ireland Assembly for Mr Halawa's immediate release and urge the Irish government to continue their work on his behalf and to use every means at their disposal to secure his release.

"This young Irish citizen has spent more than three years living in horrific conditions, without access to proper medical care and without any prospect of a fair trial.

"Amnesty International remains gravely concerned for his physical and mental wellbeing and we reiterate our call for his immediate and unconditional release."

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