Brotherhood's Beltagi, preacher referred to court on attempted murder charge

El-Sayed Gamal El-Din, Ahram Online, Wednesday 7 Aug 2013

Egypt prosecution refers Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed El-Beltagi as well as Islamist preacher Safwat Hegazy and two others to criminal court for 'attempting to kill' a police officer

Mohamed El-Beltagi

Two leading Islamist figures and two field hospital doctors from a pro-Morsi sit-in in Cairo were referred on Wednesday to criminal court on several charges, including an attempted murder for assaulting a police officer.

The Egyptian prosecution ordered the referral of senior Brotherhood figure Mohamed El-Beltagi, Islamist preacher Safwat Hegazy and two field hospital doctors from Cairo's Rabaa Al-Adawiya sit-in to criminal court for allegedly attempting to detain and assault low-rank officer Mohamed Farouk during a pro-Morsi march in July.

According to the prosecution, Farouk was captured by the defendants while securing the pro-Morsi march. He was then taken to the Rabaa Al-Adawiya sit-in, where he was severely beaten, the prosecution added.

The charges also include "acts of thuggery" and "forming a gang-like organisation to hinder law enforcement."

The four are presumed to be present at the Rabaa sit-in.

The Egyptian government has repeatedly accused Rabaa protesters of carrying out "terrorist acts" against their opponents inside the sit-in.

Several other Brotherhood figures are also being prosecuted for inciting violence in past clashes following their arrest after Morsi's ouster by the military on 3 July after mass protests against him.

The Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamist allies have been holding a mass sit-in for five weeks to press for Morsi's reinstatement.

Tensions have been running high in Egypt amid calls for Morsi supporters to end their Cairo sit-ins and return to the political process. Morsi's camp has remained defiant in the face of government orders and interior ministry threats to disband.

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