Ousted Eygptian president released from detention

Mr Mubarak's lawyer Farid Al Deeb said the former president had gone home to a villa in Cairo's Heliopolis district.

Mr Mubarak had been cleared for release earlier this month after Egypt's top appeals court acquitted him of involvement in the deaths of protesters during the 2011 revolt that ousted him.

Now to Egypt where former President Hosni Mubarak is a free man.

Mubarak was originally sentenced to life in prison in 2012 for conspiring to murder 239 demonstrators during the revolt.

But an appeals court ordered a retrial that culminated in 2014 in the case against the ageing former president and his senior officials being dropped.

His health, however, did not fail him when it came to appearing at the window of his room at the Maadi military hospital to wave to crowds of supporters gathered outside on occasions including his birthday and the anniversary of Egypt's 1973 military victory over Israel.

For many, Mubarak's authoritarian rule for almost three decades doomed any uprising to failure from the outset, given the depth and pervasiveness of institutionalized corruption under his leadership.

Today many Egyptians view Mubarak's reign through rose-tinted glasses as a time when stability, the economy and tourism were stronger. Mubarak's presidency lasted nearly thirty years, making him Egypt's longest-serving ruler since Muhammad Ali Pasha, who ruled the country from 1805 to 1848, a reign of 43 years.

ARRAF: Mubarak served three years after being convicted on corruption charges.

In six years, Egypt's Hosni Mubarak has gone from symbolizing the hubris of Middle East dictators swept away by the Arab Spring uprisings to an emblem of dashed hopes. The ruling was upheld by another court a year ago, and Mubarak's release Friday was for time served.

The Mubarak years were seen as a time of stagnation and cronyism and the trials that followed the uprising and resulted in his detention were watched attentively by the whole country.

Mubarak is not entirely out of the woods, as Sky News notes he is "the focus of a new corruption investigation after allegations he received gifts from the state-owned Al-Ahram newspaper". Both of his sons, Alaa and Gamal, were freed.

However ECRF's Gad believes that Mubarak regaining his freedom shows just how similar Egypt's new authorities under General el-Sissi (who served as head of military intelligence under Mubarak) are to the old regime, and that there's little chance he will return to detention.

Some who participated in the protests against Mubarak said they felt the uprising was in vain.

  • Joanne Flowers