Prosecutor general appeals Minya death sentences

Prosecutor General Hesham Barakat appealed the verdicts issued by Minya Criminal Court on Saturday sentencing over 180 defendants to death, the state-owned Middle East News Agency (MENA) reported.

The verdict was issued in a case accusing the defendants of violence against police and civilians in Minya in the aftermath of the ouster of former President and Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi.

Mohamed Badie, the supreme guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, is among those convicted.

According to MENA, 183 defendants were sentenced to death, two were given life in prison, and 498 defendants were acquitted. The prosecutor general’s appeal is against all the sentences, MENA said.

The defendants are accused of inciting violence, raiding the police station of the Adwa area in Minya, killing a policeman, stealing arms and ammunition, setting fire to state premises and using violence against employees. 

The violence followed the dispersal of the Brotherhood sit-ins in Cairo last August demanding the reinstatement of Morsi, which led to the deaths of over 1,000 people. 

In April, the prosecutor general issued an appeal against the court’s decision to uphold 37 of 529 death sentences handed down to defendants a month earlier, sentencing the remaining 492 defendants to life in prison.

The mass death sentences triggered widespread reactions from human rights organizations and political groups. Egyptian and international organizations decried the verdict, and a United Nations human rights body suggested the ruling was contrary to international law.

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