In anticipation of a violent reaction to former President Hosni Mubarak's sentencing, officials unveiled a plan to secure the Saturday session of his trial that includes the deployment of 160 tanks and thousands of police officers.
Security sources told Al-Masry Al-Youm that a bomb squad would examine the special Police Academy courtroom dedicated to the trial 24 hours before the 2 June session.
Security forces will also use bomb-sniffing dogs, electronic gates and metal detectors, according to a plan the Interior Ministry approved Wednesday. More than 20,000 police officers and 60 tanks will surround the academy in Cairo's Fifth Settlement and 100 tanks will be stationed inside the grounds.
Former Interior Minister Habib al-Adly and six high-ranking security officials are facing trial alongside Mubarak for the alleged involvement in killing protesters during the 18-day uprising last January and February that ended Mubarak’s three-decade rule. More than 850 people were killed during those 18 days and thousands were injured.
The former president, his sons Gamal and Alaa Mubarak, and businessman Hussein Salem were also tried for corruption in a separate case heard during the same proceedings, which began last summer.
The prosecution has requested the death penalty for Mubarak, a punishment usually carried out by hanging in Egypt. Mubarak's defense team plans to appeal a potential guilty verdict.
Although Mubarak has typically been transported by helicopter to the makeshift court, the security plan for Saturday's session includes protecting the roads surrounding the International Medical Center where Mubarak has been detained and received medical treatment throughout the trial.
Heavy security is also expected on roads that other defendants will travel. According to the plan, the courtroom will be evacuated once the judge reads the ruling and the defendants will transported to their places of detention.
The same sources said arrangements have been made for a possible attack on prisons.