CAIRO (AP) — The chief prosecutor in the Hosni Mubarak trial said Thursday he holds the ousted leader "politically and legally" responsible for the killing of protesters during the 18-day uprising that toppled his regime last year.
Mustafa Suleiman also told the court that Mubarak did nothing to stop the killings and that he was aware of them from meetings with aides, regional TV channels and reports by his security agencies.
He said Mubarak's security chief and co-defendant, Habib el-Adly, authorized the use of live ammunition on orders from Mubarak.
Mubarak and el-Adly could face the death penalty if convicted of complicity in the killing of protesters. Facing the same charge are six police commanders on trial alongside the two. Mubarak's sons, Alaa and Gamal, are charged with corruption in the same case.
"He (Mubarak) can never, as the top official, claim that he did not know what was going on," Suleiman told the court. "He is responsible for what happened and must bear the legal and political responsibility for what happened."
Mubarak stepped down on Feb. 11 and the military took over from him.
Suleiman said Mubarak told investigators that he decided to step down after the military refused to intervene to "immediately and urgently" help the security forces contain the protests. Mubarak called out the army on Jan. 28 — three days into the uprising and on the day when security forces disappeared from the streets in circumstances that have yet to be fully explained.
"He (Mubarak) fully knew what was happening but he did nothing," said Suleiman.