Two Morsi officials jailed for hiding Brotherhood leader El-Beltagy

Ahram Online , Sunday 30 Mar 2014

Former minister and an ex-MP under ousted president Mohamed Morsi convicted on Sunday for harboring Mohamed El-Beltagy while he was wanted by police

el beltagy
Mohamed El-Beltagy and Essam El-Arian (Photo: Reuters )

A Cairo court on Sunday sentenced two officials from the era of ousted president Mohamed Morsi to two years in jail for providing refuge to a Muslim Brotherhood leader who was on the run from authorities, according to a judicial source.

Khaled El-Azhary, Morsi's minister of manpower, and Gamal El-Ashry, an ex-MP under the Islamist president, were convicted of helping Brotherhood leader Mohamed El-Beltagy go into hiding last year while he was sought by authorities.

El-Beltagy, a leader of the Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, was arrested last August after almost a month in hiding. He currently faces multiple trials, some alongside Morsi, on charges including inciting murder, arranging a jailbreak that occurred during the January 2011 uprising and torturing policemen at a pro-Morsi protest camp that was forcibly dispersed by security forces on 14 August.

Morsi himself faces a multitude of trials on similar charges, some of which could carry the death penalty

The Brotherhood, which has won every Egyptian election since the toppling of long time autocrat Hosni Mubarak in 2011, has been hit hard by security forces following Morsi's ouster in July, one of the harshest crackdowns the Islamist movement has faced in its 85-year history.

Most of the group's top leadership and thousands of other Islamists have been arrested amid the government clampdown. At least 1,400 others have been killed in resultant street violence, according to Amnesty International.

The Brotherhood was declared a terrorist organisation by Egypt's interim authorities in December.

An Islamist insurgency has spiked since Morsi's removal by the military, which came after mass protests against his rule.

Almost 500 security personnel have died in the recurring attacks.


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