Court in Egypt Jails Over 160 Supporters of Brotherhood

A court in Egypt has jailed over 160 supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood for as many as 15 years, said news reports on Sunday.

The sentences have pressed the crackdown on the Islamist organization prior to the upcoming presidential election that is expected to be won by Abdel Fattah al-Sisi the former chief of the army.

The defendants in the courtroom chanted down with the military rule while the judge handed out his jail terms of 10 years to 126 of the supporters of the Brotherhood accused of being members of a terrorist group as well as violence.

Another 37 defendants were given sentences of 15 years in a separate case that was related to an attempt to allegedly blow up a metro station in Cairo.

The country’s security forces have been detaining thousands of supporters of the Brotherhood since the first democratically elected president Mohamed Morsi was deposed by the military in July of last year following huge countrywide protests against this administration.

Sisi, who is expected to be the easy winner in the May 26 to 27 vote, signaled there would be no reconciling with the Islamic organization.

Mohamed Badie, the leader of the Brotherhood is one of more than 680 people that have been given death sentences. He made a rare appearance in court, rejecting the many accusations that he and his group have been accused of.

Badie said he never made a response to the attacks against the group with violence. He said the judiciary was used in Egypt during a political conflict the likes of which his country has never seen prior to now.

The interim government declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization after the army and police suffered an upsurge of attacks, following the removal of Morsi from power. Many of those attacks were claimed to be by Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis a radical Islamist organization.

Morsi is one of the many leaders of the Brotherhood now on trial. He is facing charges that include conspiring against Egypt with Hamas the Palestinian group. Badie has described that charge as falsehood and lies.

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