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Demonstrators calling for release of Egyptian political detainees clash with police

[JURIST] Egyptian police Tuesday clashed with relatives of political prisoners demonstrating outside the country's Interior Ministry. The protesters called for the immediate release of the detainees, mostly Islamists and suspected members of the Gamaa Islamiya [Wikipedia backgrounder] and Jihad [Wikipedia backgrounder] organizations, who were imprisoned after leading a violent campaign against the regime in the 1980s and 1990s. Egyptian human rights groups and non-governmental organizations estimate that between 16,000 and 30,000 political prisoners are held in the country. More protests demanding the release of these detainees are expected by poltical opponents of President Hosni Mubarak [official profile; BBC profile]. The protests come as Egypt looks ahead to parliamentary elections scheduled for November. AFP has more.

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