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Al-Azhar University dean admits 70 Uyghur students arrested

Al-Azhar University Dean, Mohamed Al-Mahrasawy, confirmed yesterday that 70 Uyghur students had been arrested and their residency papers were investigated.

During a conference held the university Cairo, Al-Mahrasawy explained that investigations revealed that 20 students are enrolled at the university, while 50 foreigners, including three students who had been suspended, reside on campus but are not linked to the university.

He has previously denied reports that the authorities had detained and investigated scores of foreign students.

Read: 'The victims of international terrorism are the Uyghurs'

In early July, Egyptian activists, Human Rights Watch and media reports accused Egyptian security forces of detaining scores of Uyghur students studying at Al-Azhar University.

Al-Mahrasawy also said that "faculty members who were imprisoned on charges of joining the Muslim Brotherhood were not re-appointed after their release".

"Whoever proves to belong to the Muslim Brotherhood will not be appointed to the teaching staff at Al-Azhar University," he stressed.

The Egyptian government banned the group in December 2013.

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