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Al-Beltagy detained for 15 days

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Muslim Brotherhood leader faces a myriad of charges following his arrest on Thursday

Islamist leader Mohamed Al-Beltagy (DNE File Photo)

Islamist leader Mohamed Al-Beltagy
(DNE File Photo)

The prosecutor general ordered on Friday the detention of Islamist leader Mohamed Al-Beltagy for 15 days pending investigation over charges of inciting torture, murder and terrorism.

He was arrested after hiding for nearly a week with fellow Muslim Brotherhood leader, Khaled Al-Azhari, in Teresa, a village on the outskirts of Cairo. He is currently being held in Torah Prison.

During the five-hour interrogation that led to his detention, Al-Beltagy told the prosecution he is being held for “trumped-up charges” and that the cases brought against him are politically motivated.

Al-Beltagy faces two rounds of charges over accusations of torture and murder during the December 2012 anti-government protests in front of the presidential palace and during the recent pro-Morsi sit-ins at Rabaa Al-Adaweya and Al-Nahda Square.

Among other charges, he is accused of partaking in the kidnapping and torture of two police officers during the Rabaa Al-Adaweya sit-in, inciting violence during the December 2012 protests and stockpiling weapons.

Al-Beltagy defended himself in front of the prosecution when asked about several notorious statements he made during the two pro-Morsi sit-ins.

He said the public misunderstood his claim that “violence in Sinai will stop the second Al-Sisi overturns the coup.” He claimed this did not refer to terrorist attacks but to protests.

He also said describing pro-Morsi protesters as “millions of martyrs” expressed that people would hold their ground even in the face of danger, and was not a promotion of violence.

He emphasised to the prosecution that his party’s philosophy rejects violence and blamed the media for portraying “the anti-coup force” as terrorists. He said the media portrays this image to bolster the supporters of the 30 June uprising.

On Thursday, his son Anas Al-Beltagy said on his Facebook page that he holds the defence and interior ministers responsible for the safety of his father.

“The world saw how the leader of terrorists and the initiator of violence, as the pro-coup media states, was arrested without any resistance amid claims that the [Muslim Brotherhood] possess light and heavy weapons,” he posted.

Anas Al-Beltagy’s claims come amid accusations of police torturing Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie following his arrest on 20 August.

Ministry of Interior spokesman Mohsen Sarhan said that these accusations are false.

“Badie and Al-Beltagy are in the custody of the prosecutor general, and there were no signs of mistreatment during interrogations,” he said.

  • Mahmud Abdullah

    We strongly condemn Al-Beltagy’s unjust detention; the allegations brought against this noble man are baseless, cooked up and totally politically motivated. He has been kept in detention only as an attempt of military-imposed illegitimate government to weaken the ongoing pro-democracy and anti-coup protests; we unequivocally state that the so called interim government’s all efforts will go in vain. We demand Al-Beltagy’s immediate and unconditional release.

    • Magnetic

      If you demand his immediate release, this is up to you but kindly do not pluralize your comment because I do not agree, and also do not know who are “we” in your comment. Let me tell you though that this “we” is certainly not the entire country or even a quarter of it. Al-Beltagy has more clearly than ever recorded -both voice and image- his connection to Sinai terrorist attacks. He is the one who has stated that violence in Sinai will stop only if Morsi comes back to office. What else as a piece of evidence does any sane person require in order to convict Al-Beltagy?!! Egypt cannot be ruled by an “international” firm God only knows where its headquarters resides!! and … just so you know, the more you guys keep threatening our nation, the faster you are approaching your end in Egypt’s political life. Do not play the stubbornness game with the rest of Egyptians!

      • Mahmud Abdullah

        ‘We’ stand for all people who believe in democracy and against military coup d’etat against a democratically elected president/government. We are the people who believe that a president and a government must be elected by the citizens through a free and fair election, and must not be imposed on people by military or any other group or gang. We are the people who cherish and long for peace, harmony, stability, progress, prosperity and development. We are the people who uphold democratic values and norms; we are the people who uphold humanity and respect other fellow citizens and their views. Democratically held elections have proved it that we are the majority in the country.

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