Egypt refers case of 8 opponents, mostly MB leaders, to the Mufti

An Egyptian court on Monday referred the case papers to the Mufti to state his legal opinion, albeit non-bounding, where the court can issue its final verdict without his consent.

The Cairo Criminal Court on Monday sentenced eight opponents, including Muslim Brotherhood General Guide Mohamed Badie and other MB leaders, namely, Dr. Mohamed el-Beltagy, Dr. Mahmoud Ezzat, Amr Zaki, Dr. Osama Yassin, as well as Sheikh Mohamed Abdel Maqsoud and Sheikh Safwat Hegazy, and the Islmic Group leader Assem Abdel-Maged, to death penalty, in Case No. 72 of 2021.

While the court said it would refer the case to the Grand Mufti for review, it set a session for September 20 to announce final verdict.

The verdict can be appealed and the judge can rule independently of the Grand Mufti. The Brotherhood won a series of free elections after Egypt’s 2011 uprising.

Late President Mohamed Morsi, who had belonged to the Brotherhood, was elected president in 2012 but was overthrown in a coup by the military only one year later.

MB slams the unfair death sentence

The Muslim Brotherhood on Monday issued a statement condemning of the referral of the sentencing papers of the General Guide Dr. Badie and 7 others to the Mufti

“The Muslim Brotherhood (MB) condemns the unfair sentence issued on Monday, 22 May 2023, by the Cairo Criminal Court against eight MB and Islamic Group leaders in Case No. 72 of 2021, known in the media as the “Manassa Events”

The statement stated that this behavior on the part of the authorities “confirms the regime’s continued implementation of the strategy of killing under the guise of law, within the framework of its desperate attempts to eradicate its opponents”.

The court handed death sentences to the MB General Guide Dr. Mohamed Badie, a former minister in late president Mohamed Morsi’s government, members of parliament, and Muslim scholars, the statement read.

“The MB views such verdicts as acts of killing under the guise of law, given the fact that trials lack the most basic standards of justice, integrity, and commitment to litigation procedures guaranteed by law”.

The Brotherhood statement also stressed that “this sentence is a political decision par excellence, aimed at physically liquidating political opponents outside the law”, adding:

“In fact, this behavior by the government actually started in 2013 with the killing of peaceful demonstrators who were backing the democratically elected president, in horrific events such as those that took place at: the Republican Guard Club, the Manassa Memorial, the Rabaa al-Adawiya Square, and others; where the most heinous and unforgettable massacres in Egypt’s history took place against political opponents”.

In conclusion, the Muslim Brotherhood called on everyone, including states, governments, and national and popular forces, “to intervene to stop these unfair trials, and to work for the release of all political detainees in Egyptian prisons”.