World

CAIRO – Egypt’s top appeals court has acquitted Hosni Mubarak of killing of protesters during the 2011 uprising that ended his 30-year rule, in a final ruling that could see the former president walk free, AlJazeera reported.

After hearing arguments on Thursday at the Court of Cassation, Judge Ahmed Abdel Qawi announced: “The court has found the defendant innocent.”

The court also rejected demands by counsels for the victims to reopen civil suits, leaving no remaining option for appeal or retrial.

Mubarak was accused of inciting the deaths of nearly 900 protesters in an 18-day uprising that began on January 25, 2011, that ended when he stepped down the next month.

He had been sentenced to life in 2012 but an appeals court ordered a retrial, which dismissed the charges two years later.

Mubarak, 88, has spent most of his time in a military hospital since his arrest in 2011.

In January 2016, the appeals court had maintained a three-year imprisonment for Mubarak and his two sons on corruption charges.