Lawyers for Ibrahim Halawa have finally had the chance to present a defence at his trial - almost four years after he was detained in Cairo.
The development has been welcomed by the Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney.
He said the end of the 21-year-old Dubliner's ordeal appears closer than at any time in the last four years. Ibrahim Halawa is an Irish citizen.
However, the more than 400 other defendants in the mass trial must also have their defence heard before verdicts are reached.
Ibrahim's sister Somaia said the family does not expect a speedy conclusion. She said: "People may look at this and say there's progress, but the reality is that only seven lawyers got to speak today - there are still 485 lawyers left (to speak)."