DUBAI: Italian authorities this month will begin questioning the Egyptian tutor of the Cambridge student Giulio Regeni, who was murdered in Cairo in 2016.
A British judge gave the green light to Italian interrogators to interview Professor Maha Mahfouz Abdelrahman, after she agreed to be questioned, according to British daily The Guardian.
The decision was announced last month after Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano met with British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson.
Regeni, 28, was carrying out research on Egypt’s independent trade unions as part of his PhD at Girton College when he disappeared on Jan. 25, 2016.
His tortured body was found on a main road outside Cairo two weeks later. Suspicions were raised that he had been kidnapped and killed by the Egyptian security forces.
Italian magistrates investigating the case previously complained of limited cooperation from Egyptian authorities and Abdelrahman, who previously lived in Egypt, before moving to the UK to lecture in Cambridge at the department of politics and international relations.
Computer records submitted to the courts and leaked by the Italian daily La Repubblica revealed that Regeni might have felt pressured by his research.
In a Skype chat Regeni told his mother in October 2015 he was “going deeper into the subject” because it was uncharted territory and “because Maha insisted.”
Investigators want to question Abdelrahman about who chose the research topic and who chose the questions Regeni put to traders shortly before he disappeared, 18 days after having been filmed and photographed by a trade union official who was also reportedly a security service informer.