Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Seven African countries' economies at risk over Brexit decision

Read more

THE DEBATE

Britain votes out: What next?

Read more

#TECH 24

The 'fintech' revolution

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

A certified 'palace': How hotels strive for excellence

Read more

#THE 51%

In her own image: Women in Art

Read more

REPORTERS

World War I: When northern France was on German time

Read more

REVISITED

Video: Ugandan city still scarred by Lord's Resistance Army atrocities

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

#Brexit sparks a storm on social media

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Markets, pound plunge on Brexit vote

Read more

Africa

Egyptian court overturns death sentences of Morsi supporters

© Khaled Desouki, AFP | Egypt’s High Court in downtown Cairo on January 1, 2015

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2016-02-03

An Egyptian appeals court on Wednesday overturned death sentences for 149 pro-Islamists accused of killing policemen in a mob attack on their station, a judicial source said.

The court ordered a retrial for the defendants over the attack, which killed 13 policemen near Cairo on August 14, 2013 the day police shot dead hundreds of Islamist demonstrators in the capital.

The initial ruling in February 2015 came amid a series of death sentences in mass trials that were criticised internationally, as the government cracked down on supporters of ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.

The court had also sentenced 37 people to death in absentia, but they would have to hand themselves in for a retrial.

The grounds for the appeals court ruling were not immediately available, but the court has overturned hundreds of death sentences over the past year, to the relief of rights advocates and frustration of some in the government who have urged fast-track executions.

Seven people have been executed for political violence since Morsi's ouster, including six who were convicted of belonging to an Islamist militant group.

The military overthrow of Morsi, the country's first freely elected president, ushered in the worst domestic bloodshed in the country's modern history.

Morsi ruled for only a year, deeply dividing the country, and his removal was met with escalating protests by Islamists that police dispersed with live ammunition.

On August 14, 2013, less than two months after his overthrow, police broke up two protest camps in Cairo, killing about 700 protesters.

Morsi's supporters around the country attacked police stations, killing dozens of officers, and torched the churches of Coptic Christians.

Morsi himself is facing several trials and has already been sentenced to death in one case.

Several leaders of his Islamist Muslim Brotherhood movement, including its chief Mohamed Badie, have been sentenced to either death or lengthy jail terms.

The movement has been blacklisted as a "terrorist organisation" and its assets confiscated.

The police crackdown that initially targeted Morsi supporters was later widened to include secularist and leftist leaders and activists.

(AFP)

Date created : 2016-02-03

  • EGYPT

    Five years after uprising, Egyptians find little to celebrate

    Read more

  • EGYPT

    Egyptian court upholds Mubarak, sons prison sentence

    Read more

  • EGYPT - MEDIA

    Egypt frees Al-Jazeera journalists following presidential pardon

    Read more

COMMENT(S)