It's former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak's 83rd birthday today, but when Egypt's new justice minister, Mohamed Abdelaziz al-Juindy, appeared on television on Wednesday, he didn't exactly extend his warmest wishes.
Instead, according to CNN, the minister said Mubarak could face the death penalty if he's found guilty of having ordered the killing of anti-government protesters. "If the crime is proven, then the court will not hesitate to issue the death sentence," he said, adding that it's a "horrible crime" to "kill 800 citizens who were asking for their rights and hoping to topple a corrupt regime that caused the ruin of Egypt." The government is currently detaining Mubarak at a hospital in the Red Sea resort of Sharm El-Sheikh, where the former president was admitted after suffering heart problems.
AFP points out that this isn't the first time the prospect of Mubarak facing the death penalty has been floated. The head of Cairo's appeals court also raised the possibility after Mubarak's former interior minister, Habib al-Adly, claimed the former president ordered him to use violence against protesters.
Photo by Reuters