Egyptian authorities have remanded in custody for another four days members of the “Ghalaba” movement on charges of inciting strife, violence and street protests.
The interior ministry said Friday that it had thwarted a terrorist plot, adding that it had arrested five “Ghalaba” members led by Yasser al-Omda, who is based in Turkey.
The ministry statement said that the movement is one of the armed wings of the Muslim Brotherhood, which Egypt considers a terrorist organization.
Its members planned to stir chaos after Friday prayers by tossing concrete blocks packed with nails on worshipers.
Security sources said that the suspects have admitted to the prosecutor general that they had been in contact with the plot’s mastermind in Turkey and that they had received instructions on how to manufacture the nail bombs.
Amr Abdul Menhem, an expert on Islamist movements, told Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper that there is evidence linking the Muslim Brotherhood with the “Ghalaba” movement.
“Ghalaba” had instructed its members through a video posted online to use the nail bombs, and had urged Egyptians to hold street protests and carry out violent acts against state institutions.
Experts say that “Ghalaba” and other similar movements have adopted the Muslim Brotherhood’s ideology.
In its first statement, the movement had called for the immediate release of Brotherhood members including former president Mohammed Morsi.
It has also spread rumors on state politics and false data on the Egyptian economy.
Security sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that Qatar’s Al-Jazeera TV network has contributed to the spread of “Ghalaba” by allowing it to broadcast its statements.
The movement is led by Brotherhood members based in Turkey. They aim to paralyze the state politically and economically, and to target military and security institutions, the sources said.