Egypt Extends Remand of Israeli 'Spy'

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- Ilan Grapel, the U.S.-born Israeli being held in Egypt on alleged espionage charges, will remain in custody at least 45 more days, the Egyptian daily al-Ahram reported Wednesday.

An Egyptian court extended Grapel's remand despite Israeli and U.S. efforts to convince Egypt to release him while the investigation was going on.

Egyptian authorities arrested Grapel, 27, in Cairo last June on suspicion of being an agent for the Mossad, Israel's secret service. His presence in Cairo's Tahrir Square during some of the demonstrations led authorities to believe he was inciting protests against the interim government.

At the time of his arrest, al-Ahram labeled him a "Mossad officer who tried to sabotage the Egyptian revolution."

Grapel has denied all charges, repeatedly telling authorities he came to Egypt to participate in a summer intern program with a legal aid group.

Grapel immigrated to Israel as a lone soldier in 2005 and served as a paratrooper in the Israel Defense Forces. He was wounded in the Second Lebanon War in the summer of 2006.

Grapel is a third-year student at Emory University Law School in Atlanta, Georgia.

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