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Last Updated: Tuesday, 20 December 2005, 16:41 GMT
Egyptian hunger striker 'better'
Egyptian opposition leader Ayman Nour
If convicted Mr Nour could face up to 15 years in prison
The condition of Egyptian opposition leader Ayman Nour, who has been on hunger strike in prison for 11 days, has improved slightly, his lawyer says.

Amir Salim told the BBC that doctors had given Mr Nour injections of glucose and insulin and made him drink tea.

Mr Nour, who is on trial for forging petition signatures to register his al-Ghad party last year, says he is protesting at his treatment in prison.

He denies the charges and has said they are politically motivated.

Mr Salim said his client, who is a diabetic, was still very weak and was insisting on continuing his hunger strike until Saturday, when the judge is due to deliver his verdict.

If convicted, Mr Nour could face up to 15 years in prison.

The US says it is watching the trial closely.

Testimony withdrawn

A co-defendant in the trial, Ayman Ismail, had admitted forging documents for Mr Nour - but he has since withdrawn his testimony, saying the confession was forced out of him with threats against his family.

Mr Nour gained prominence when he formed his party in October 2004.

He was arrested in January and was detained for six weeks without charge until his release on bail.

Despite his ongoing trial, Mr Nour was allowed to stand in both the presidential and parliamentary elections earlier this year.

Mr Nour came second to President Hosni Mubarak in September's presidential poll, but lost his seat in the People's Assembly to Mr Mubarak's National Democratic Party in November.

He was jailed again by the courts earlier this month.


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