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President Hosni Mubarak's government has engaged in a persistent pattern of torture, whipping, sexually abusing and hanging political prisoners by their wrists, Amnesty International charged Wednesday.

Evidence of torture comes from interviews with victims detained from 1986 to 1988 and more than 100 medical reports by the Egyptian Justice Ministry's forensic medicine department, a spokeswoman for the human rights group said.At least 3,000 political opponents, many of them members of Islamic groups, have been arrested arbitrarily under state of emergency laws since 1986, Amnesty spokeswoman Carline Windall said. Many were held incommunicado for weeks or months before being formally charged, she said.

Egypt's Interior Ministry Wednesday denied that the country has any political prisoners and said it was "absolutely untrue that there is torture of any kind."