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Egypt detains another minister from Morsi’s cabinet

December 14, 2020 at 9:24 am

A man holds a poster of the late former Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi during a protest in New York, US on 2 March 2019 [Atılgan Özdil/Anadolu Agency]

Egyptian authorities have detained Abdul-Latif Shehab, transportation minister in the cabinet of late President Mohamed Morsi, local media reported on Saturday evening.

Abdul-Latif, who was detained from his house east of Cairo, is the second minister from Morsi’s cabinet to be detained in the space of one week over claims of joining the “banned” Muslim Brotherhood.

Prior to Abdul-Latif, Egyptian authorities detained the former Minister of Manpower and Immigration Khaled al-Azhari from his home over claims he joined a “terror group and funding terror activities”.

Al-Azhari was transferred to the Public Prosecution for investigation. He denies the charges.

The state-owned newspaper Akhbar Al-Youm said: “The detained former transportation minister is a member of the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood and he is in contact with its leaders in exile.”

READ: Egypt court adds 26 to ‘terrorism list’

“He participated in plans aimed at undermining security and stability in the country and he is being investigated over these charges,” it added.

In a statement, Al-Shehab Human Rights Centre (NGO) condemned what it called the “enforced disappearance” of Abdul-Latif”.

“The Centre condemns the enforced disappearance of Abdul-Latif, holds the Egyptian authorities responsible for his safety, calls for revealing the place of his detention and immediately releasing him,” Al-Shehab’s statement said.

Morsi was the first-ever freely elected Egyptian president. He was elected in 2012 and ousted almost one-year later by his Defence Minister Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi who has since cracked down on opposition groups and declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terror organisation.