Egypt violates international human rights as mass death sentence handed out to Muslim Brotherhood members
The Egyptian government has sentenced 529 members of the Muslim Brotherhood to death on charges of murder, in the largest mass death sentence handed out in Egyptian history. An additional 700 Muslim Brotherhood supporters have been called to court tomorrow, Tuesday 25th March.
The Muslim Brotherhood was proscribed a terrorist group by the government after the removal of the former President, Mohammed Morsi, in July 2013.
While The Henry Jackson Society has spoken out against the restrictions imposed by the Muslim Brotherhood during their time in power following the 2011 elections, the Society condemns the mass death sentence as undemocratic and in violation of Egypt’s international human rights obligations.
Despite earlier violations of human rights by the Muslim Brotherhood, with their imposition of an Islamist constitution and the powers given to Morsi reflective of the Mubarak era, Egypt’s future rests in dialogue. The state can only resolve its internal political and civil unrest through a fair and judicial process in line with international law.
In advance of the further case against 700 supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood, The Henry Jackson Society proposes the Egyptian government ensure that:
- The 529 supporters who were sentenced to death today are able to call for an appeal to ensure a fair trial;
- Future cases are heard in a timely manner and do not allow for verdicts to be brought in absentia;
- The court hears the defense’s arguments in tomorrow’s case against 700 further supporters
HJS Research Fellow Emily Dyer, who spent time in Cairo following the revolution, said: “This latest decision by the primary court in Minya signals a giant step away from justice and back towards a Mubarak-style dictatorship.
“While the Muslim Brotherhood actively pursued restrictions on democratic freedoms during its time in power, the government’s treatment of many of its supporters since July 2013 is cause for serious concern.”