Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

25 Brotherhood members sentenced by Egyptian military court

An Egyptian military tribunal on Tuesday convicted 25 influential Muslim Brotherhood members and sentenced them to up to 10 years in jail, The Associated Press reported the same day.

The accusations against the members of Egypt’s largest opposition group included money laundering and terrorism, but it was not clear on Tuesday if all 25 were found guilty of both crimes. Fifteen other defendants were acquitted in the same case.

The verdict ended a yearlong trial that came amid a widespread government crackdown on the Brotherhood that has resulted in 800 detentions so far this year. The trial received much pointed criticism from international human rights groups for its closed door approach and military setting. The case was taken to a military court because the 1981 Egyptian Emergency Law allows the president to refer civilians to military tribunals. Opponents of the trail believed it should have been a civil trial instead.

Amnesty International deemed the sentencing “a perversion of justice,” and called for a civilian re-trial. “Today’s sentences leave little doubt that the Egyptian authorities are determined to undermine what has become the main opposition group in the country,” the group said in a statement.

For the full article, click here.


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