Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Egyptian court sentences two aged Islamic leaders to 15 years

Cairo ( Associated Press) – An Egyptian court on Sunday sentenced two aged Islamic leaders to 15 years in prison for spreading false news and inciting state institutions.

Abdel-Moneim Abul Fatouh, a former presidential candidate and head of the Islamic Strong Egypt Party and the Muslim Brotherhood group executive leader Mahmoud Izzat, along with seven other defendants sentenced to 15 years in prison by the Supreme State Security Court. charge.

A Cairo court also sentenced Mohamed al-Qasas, deputy head of the Strong Egypt Party, and another activist, Moaz al-Sharkawi, to 10 years in prison on similar charges, including membership in an outlawed group, the Muslim Brotherhood, Which Egypt designated as a terrorist organization in 2013.

The court dealing with terrorism-related cases sentenced 14 others to life imprisonment.

Abul Fatouh, 70, is a former senior leader of the Brotherhood who was sacked from the group in 2011 when it decided to run in Egypt’s presidential elections. He and al-Qasas were detained in February 2018 after harshly criticizing the government of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

Pro-government media in Egypt have insisted that Abul Fatouh’s true sympathies still lie with the Brotherhood.

The mysterious Muslim Brotherhood personality Izzat, 77, was detained in August 2020. That was largely because the military ousted Egypt’s first democratically elected president, Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi. Morsi’s short-lived rule proved divisive and led to massive protests across the country.

Izzat was convicted of several crimes related to terrorism and was sentenced to death twice in absentia in two separate cases. He was tried once again and sentenced to prison in April last year.

Abul Fatouh, Izzat and al-Qasas were added to the country’s terrorist list.

Rights groups have repeatedly criticized such collective punishment in Egypt and called on the authorities to ensure a fair trial.

Groups including Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International say the arrests and trials of people such as Abul Fatouh and al-Qasas are part of the government’s crackdown on dissent, which has targeted not only Islamist political opponents but also pro-democracy activists, journalists . and online critics.

Nation World News Desk
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