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700 MILITANTS REPORTEDLY GO FREE OVER TWO MONTHS

Nearly 700 people described as Islamic militants have been released from jail in the last two months, Egypt's Interior Ministry said Sunday.

At least 200 of the detainees were freed Saturday to mark the Muslim feast of Eid al-Fitr, which began Sunday in Egypt and ends the holy month of Ramadan, said Montasser el-Zayat, a lawyer specializing in Islamic radicals' cases.

An Interior Ministry official said none of the detainees had been convicted, and none was charged with a violent crime.

The official said most of those released had been linked to al-Gamaa al-Islamiyya, or the Islamic Group, which waged an insurrection against the government in the 1990s.

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