The Muslim Brotherhood has urged the Egyptian authorities not to carry out the death penalties imposed on 12 of its members and senior officials, Anadolu reported on Tuesday. The movement described the ruling by Egypt's highest civilian court, which upheld the sentences, as "retaliatory" and stressed that executing the men will not deter it from its work.
The men were arrested during or after the violent dispersal of the Rabaa Al-Adawiya Square protest in 2013. They include Mohamed Al-Beltagy, Safwat Hegazy, Abdel Rahman El-Bar, Osama Yassin and Ahmed Aref. They were all either MPs or ministers before the government was overthrown by a coup and they were arrested.
The Muslim Brotherhood has urged the international community and human rights institutions to stand up against the verdicts. The Egyptian authorities are yet to comment.
On 14 August 2013, the army and police dispersed protests by supporters of the late Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi in Cairo, killing hundreds and arresting thousands more. Many of the detainees have died in prison due to torture and the lack of proper medical care, as well as the harsh conditions.