CAIRO “” The Egyptian Ministry of Interior said yesterday that Magdy El-Nashar, the 33-year-old chemist, an Egyptian who was arrested in Cairo over the London bombings, had no links with Al-Qaeda. “El-Nashar who was arrested on Thursday has no link with Al-Qaeda; so far we don’t know if he is innocent or not. The British Scotland Yard will attend the investigation within the next 48 hours,” said the Egyptian Minister of Interior, Habib El-Adly.
The postgraduate biochemist, detained in Cairo, yesterday denied any link to the London bombings. “He said he had come back to Egypt for a month-and-a-half holiday and was planning to go back to Britain to resume his studies and that all his belongings are still in his flat in Leeds,” said Mahmoud Al-Fishawi, head of the information department at the Ministry of Interior.
El-Nashar’s doctorate at Leeds, on which he started research in October 2000, focused on the “development of a novel matrix for the immobilization of enzymes for biotechnology”. In a statement issued yesterday, the Judges Club said if Al-Fishawi [Al-Nashar?] is proved to be guilty, they will refuse to let him be tried in England. The Bar Association has already filed a request at the ministry asking for a permission to attend the investigation.
“So far the ministry has not given us a word, but El-Nashar has a right to have someone to defend him,” said Montasser Al-Zayat, who represents the Freedom Committee of the Bar Association.