CAIRO: An Egyptian court sentenced to death ten members of the Muslim Brotherhood on Sunday

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Egypt EgyptBefore the court meets on June 19 to ratify the sentences, the case will be forwarded to Egypt’s top spiritual authority, the Grand Mufti, as a formality in death penalty cases. Nine of the ten offenders were in detention, while one was punished in his absence, according to the source.

In 2015, they were accused of many acts of violence against police, at which time there was an uptick in attacks on security forces. Following the military overthrow of former President Mohamed Morsi, Egypt declared the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization in 2013.

Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the general-turned-president who overthrew Morsi, has subsequently spearheaded a crackdown on the organization, imprisoning hundreds of its members, including its senior commander. In June 2019, Morsi died in detention after becoming unwell during a judicial hearing. After multiple trials that drew international outrage, Cairo has handed down death sentences or extended prison sentences.

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In Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous country, civilian criminals are sentenced to death by hanging. According to Amnesty International, Egypt had the third highest number of known executions in the world last year, after China and Iran. Deep schisms in Egyptian society, a crushing economic crisis, and often-fatal opposition marches defined Morsi’s administration.

Despite decades of suppression, the Muslim Brotherhood, which was founded in 1928, has positioned itself as Egypt’s principal opposition force. It has always denied any involvement in the violence that the government accuses it of. Across the Muslim world, it has spawned a slew of spin-off groups and political parties.

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