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Egyptian court confirms death sentence on Brotherhood leader

Source: Reuters - Sat, 21 Jun 2014 08:46 GMT
Author: Reuters
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(Adds background, details of second court case)

CAIRO, June 21 (Reuters) - An Egyptian court on Saturday confirmed death sentences against the leader of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood and at least 182 of his supporters, judicial sources at the court told Reuters.

The court's decision came two months after it referred the case against the Brotherhood's general guide Mohamed Badie and hundreds of others to the state's highest religious authority, the Mufti, the first step towards imposing a death sentence.

They were charged over violence that erupted in the southern Egyptian town of Minya in July in the aftermath of the army's ouster of Islamist President Mohamed Mursi, a senior Brotherhood member, after mass protests against his rule. One senior police officer was killed in the violence.

Saturday's decision comes just two weeks after former army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi took office as president after winning an election in May. Sisi led the overthrow of Mursi which was followed by protests by Mursi's supporters and a crackdown by security forces in which hundreds of Islamist protesters were killed and thousands jailed.

In a separate case, a Cairo court referred Badie and 13 other Brotherhood supporters on Thursday to the Mufti on charges of murder and firearms possession related to clashes during the protests last July. Around 500 army and police officers have been killed since Mursi's fall.

Badie and other senior Brotherhood leaders including Mursi are standing trial in other cases.

(Reporting by Yasmine Saleh and Dominic Evans; Editing by Janet Lawrence)

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