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Hamas urges probe into Palestinian's death in Egyptian jail

RIA Novosti

19:03 13/10/2009 CAIRO, October 13 (RIA Novosti) - Hamas accused Egypt on Tuesday of torturing to death in jail the brother of one of the group's senior officials.

"We demand Egyptian officials conduct an investigation into the incident and punish those guilty of Youssef Abu Zuhri's death," the radical Islamic group said.

Zuhri, who had spent six months in prison in Egypt, was also the bodyguard for Hamas' official spokesman. He was arrested while crossing into Egypt from the Gaza Strip.

Egypt has dismissed the accusations. Officials say 38-year-old Zuhri died of heart problems while he was undergoing treatment in a prison hospital.

Egypt is a mediator between Hamas, which controls Gaza, and its rival faction Fatah, in charge of the Palestinian West Bank. It also mediates in prisoner swaps between Hamas and Israel.

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