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Egypt court hands Muslim Brotherhood deputy guide life term

Relatives speak with Egyptian prisoners as they stand behind bars in a court in Cairo on 9 August 2015 [Stringer/Apaimages]
Relatives of those in prison speak through the bars in a court in Cairo on 9 August 2015 [Stringer/Apaimages]

An Egyptian court has sentenced the deputy supreme guide of the now banned Muslim Brotherhood, Mahmoud Ezzat, to life imprisonment.

The Minya Criminal Court also sentenced seven other members of the political group to life imprisonment in absentia and eight others to five years in jail.

The same court acquitted another person of charges of forming a terrorist cell aimed at overthrowing the government and sabotaging the economy.

Ezzat has been missing since 2013.

Egypt witnessed an unprecedented crackdown on opposition groups since the military coup that ousted the country’s first democratically elected President Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

READ: Senior Muslim Brotherhood official dies in Egypt jail

The military crushed the Muslim Brotherhood movement, arresting Morsi and many of the group’s senior leaders, and the group was subsequently outlawed. Thousands of Brotherhood supporters have since been killed and many more have been jailed with no recourse to legal representation.

Morsi’s death while in custody in 2019 drew severe backlash from the international community as it was widely speculated that it was the result of mistreatment while in detention.

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