Egypt court orders retrial for Brotherhood leaders

Group’s general guide and 36 others initially sentenced to death sentences or life in jail.

File photo of Muslim Brotherhood''s Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie flashing the Rabaa sign at a court on the outskirts of Cairo
Thousands of Muslim Brotherhood members have been jailed in a crackdown on the group [File:Asmaa Waguih/Reuters]

An Egypt court has ordered a retrial of the Muslim Brotherhood’s general guide, Mohamed Badie, and 36 others.

The defendants were initially sentenced to death sentences or life in jail in a case referred to as the Rabaa Operation Room.

They are accused of setting up an “operations room” for the Rabaa al-Adawiya sit-in organised by Brotherhood supporters after military toppled the president, Mohamed Morsi.

They are accused of giving orders to the protesters, which “spread nationwide chaos”.

The sit-in was dispersed on August 14, 2013, leaving hundreds dead.

Among the defendants are several journalists and rights activists including Samhy Mostafa Mohammed Eladly and Abdullah Elfakhrany.

The UN has denounced mass trials that have left thousands of Brotherhood members and supporters jailed, calling them “unprecedented in recent history”.

Morsi and several top leaders of the Brotherhood are facing several trials on charges punishable by death.

Wednesday is not the first time a retrial is ordered in a case where a death sentence has been ordered against Muslim Brotherhood leaders, including Badie.

On Wednesday, a court upheld 15-year jail sentences against other Brotherhood leaders.

Source: Al Jazeera