Rome probing 7 Egypt spies on Regeni

Suspected of abducting Italian researcher in Cairo

(ANSA) - Rome, November 29 - Rome prosecutors are set to investigate seven agents of the Egyptian secret service in a probe into alleged abduction in connection with the torture and murder in Cairo in early 2016 of Italian research student Giulio Regeni, judicial sources aid Thursday.
    The formal registration as being under investigation will be made by prosecutor Sergio Colaiocco early next week, sources said.
    The involvement of the seven is also linked to the analysis of phone records from which it emerged that Regeni was being surveilled at least until January 25, 2016, when he disappeared.
    The results of the investigations by special police units ROS and SCO have been known to Egyptian authorities for at least a year since they were contained in documents made available by Rome magistrates last December, the sources said.

Foreign Minister Enzo Moavero Milanesi said Thursday that "the search for the truth on the
barbaric killing of Giulio Regeni remains a priority within the framework of Italy's relations with Egypt, in the awareness of the strong demand for justice that is coming from relatives, institutions and Italians".
The foreing ministry said it would take the necessary steps to remind Egyptian authorities to renew with determination their commitment, expressed on several occasions, also at the highest level, to reach concrete and significant results".

    Earlier Thursday House Speaker Roberto Fico said the House would halt all diplomatic relations with the Egyptian parliament until there is a breakthrough and trial in the Regeni case.
    "With great regret I must announce that the Lower House will suspend all type of diplomatic relations with the Egyptian Parliament until there is a real breakthrough in investigations and a trial that resolves the case," he said.
    House caucuses later agreed to back Fico's move.
    "All the groups have decided to adhere to the Speaker's initiative," they said in a statement.
    Rome prosecutors said Wednesday they would be probing several Egyptian police and spies in the case, but did not specify the number. The Rome probe into Regeni has accelerated and the first suspects will be probed soon, sources said.
    Regeni, 28, disappeared in Cairo on January 25, 2016, the heavily policed fifth anniversary of the uprising that felled former strongman Hosni Mubarak, and his mutilated body was found in a ditch on the road to Alexandria on February 3.
    His parents said they could only recognise him "from the tip of his nose".
    Egypt has put out several explanations for his death including a car accident, a gay lovers' tiff turned ugly and a kidnapping for ransom in which the alleged gang, criminals but presumably innocent of the Regeni murder, were wiped out.
    Speaking after the latest and 10th meeting between Egyptian and Roman investigators earlier this week, the sources said Italian prosecutors plan on citing an unspecified number of Egyptian police and secret service agents who were recently identified by Italian special police units ROS and SCO.
    According to the Italian media, however, there will not be progress in the case unless Egypt cooperates at a diplomatic level.
    Among other things, the security personnel are accused of the various attempted cover-ups of the murder.
    Regeni, from the northern Friuli region, was researching Egyptian street sellers' unions for Cambridge University, a politically sensitive issue.
    The head of the Cairo street sellers' union said he fingered Regeni to scurity services as a spy.


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