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Egypt Upholds Death Sentence for 12 Senior Muslim Brotherhood Figures

Egypt Upholds Death Sentence for 12 Senior Muslim Brotherhood Figures

Monday, 14 June, 2021 - 16:30
Muslim Brotherhood's senior member Mohamed El-Beltagi sits behind the bars during a court session in Cairo. (Reuters)

Egypt's highest civilian court on Monday upheld death sentences against 12 senior Muslim Brotherhood figures over a 2013 sit-in, judicial sources said.


The ruling, which cannot be appealed against, means the 12 men could face execution pending approval by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. They include Abdul Rahman Al-Bar, commonly described as the group's mufti or top religious scholar, Mohamed El-Beltagi, a former member of parliament, and Osama Yassin, a former minister.


Many Muslim Brotherhood figures have been sentenced to death in other cases related to the unrest that followed the ousting of Brotherhood president Mohamed Morsi in 2013, but the Court of Cassation ordered retrials.


Monday's ruling relates to a mass trial of hundreds of suspects accused of murder and incitement of violence during pro-Brotherhood protests at Rabaa Adawiya square in Cairo in the weeks after Morsi's overthrow.


In September 2018, an Egyptian criminal court sentenced 75 people to death and issued varying jail terms for more than 600 others. Many defendants were tried in absentia.


Forty-four of those sentenced to death appealed to the Court of Cassation. Thirty-one had their sentences changed to life in prison, while death sentences were upheld for 12 others.


A final defendant, the senior Muslim Brotherhood leader Essam el-Erian, died in prison in Cairo in August 2020. Morsi died in prison in 2019.


The court also upheld jail terms for many other defendants including a life sentence for Mohamed Badie, leader of the outlawed Brotherhood, and a 10-year jail term for Morsi's son Osaama, the judicial sources said.


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