World

Egypt court reduces heavy sentences against Islamist women protesters

  • Egyptian women supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi stand inside the defendants' cage in a courtroom in Alexandria, Egypt, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013. A defense lawyer says an Egyptian appeal court has sentenced 14 women to a suspended year for protesting in support of Islamist ousted President Mohammed Morsi, overturning a harsh sentence of 11 years that has caused an outcry.(AP Photo/Eman Helal)

    Egyptian women supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi stand inside the defendants' cage in a courtroom in Alexandria, Egypt, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013. A defense lawyer says an Egyptian appeal court has sentenced 14 women to a suspended year for protesting in support of Islamist ousted President Mohammed Morsi, overturning a harsh sentence of 11 years that has caused an outcry.(AP Photo/Eman Helal)  (The Associated Press)

  • Egyptian women supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi stand inside the defendants' cage in a courtroom in Alexandria, Egypt, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013. A defense lawyer says an Egyptian appeal court has sentenced 14 women to a suspended year for protesting in support of Islamist ousted President Mohammed Morsi, overturning a harsh sentence of 11 years that has caused an outcry.(AP Photo/Eman Helal)

    Egyptian women supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi stand inside the defendants' cage in a courtroom in Alexandria, Egypt, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013. A defense lawyer says an Egyptian appeal court has sentenced 14 women to a suspended year for protesting in support of Islamist ousted President Mohammed Morsi, overturning a harsh sentence of 11 years that has caused an outcry.(AP Photo/Eman Helal)  (The Associated Press)

  • Egyptian women supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi stand inside the defendants' cage in a courtroom in Alexandria, Egypt, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013. A defense lawyer says an Egyptian appeal court has sentenced 14 women to a suspended year for protesting in support of Islamist ousted President Mohammed Morsi, overturning a harsh sentence of 11 years that has caused an outcry.(AP Photo/Eman Helal)

    Egyptian women supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi stand inside the defendants' cage in a courtroom in Alexandria, Egypt, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013. A defense lawyer says an Egyptian appeal court has sentenced 14 women to a suspended year for protesting in support of Islamist ousted President Mohammed Morsi, overturning a harsh sentence of 11 years that has caused an outcry.(AP Photo/Eman Helal)  (The Associated Press)

A defense lawyer says an Egyptian appeals court has reduced long prison sentences for 14 Islamist women for protesting, instead giving them 1-year suspended sentences.

The lawyer, al-Shimaa Saad, says Saturday's court ruling means the women will be released following more than a month in custody.

The 14 women were originally sentenced to 11 years in prison after being convicted on charges related to an Oct. 31 protest in support of ousted President Mohammed Morsi.

Saad says the court also reduced the sentences of seven teenage defendants who were originally given prison terms until they turned 18. The appeals court gave the teenage girls three months probation.

The initial sentences handed down late last month caused an international and domestic outcry.

Human Rights Watch called the sentences "blatantly political."