The Egyptian government has made formal requests to Qatar to hand over Assem Abdel Maged, said spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Badr Abdelatty.
He pointed out that the office of the Prosecutor-General specifically called upon Interpol to arrest Abdel Maged. He added that the Egyptian Ministry of Justice had communicated with the foreign ministry and the Egyptian embassy in Doha to also call on the Qatari government to raise attention to this issue.
The spokesman also cited the 1998 Arab Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism, saying that the Qatari government was compelled to abide by its stipulations. The Arab League convention, which includes Egypt and Qatar among its signatories, provides a framework for extraditing individuals facing charges in their native countries as they relate to terrorism.
Abdelatty added that the Qatari government had neither complied with nor declined the request to hand over Abdel Maged.
The senior member of Al-Jamaa Al-Islamiya fled Egypt shortly following former president Mohamed Morsi’s ouster to the Gulf nation and has been interviewed on Al-Jazeera from Doha. Abdel Maged has also begun broadcasting a programme called “Misr Islamiya” for the Turkey-based Rabaa TV channel that was launched amidst a media crackdown by the Egyptian government.
An Egyptian court previously froze Abdel Maged’s assets, and he faces a number of charges including inciting violence and terrorism; murder; and the establishment, funding and arming of a gang to assault citizens. An arrest warrant was issued for him in July.
Already contentious relations between the two nations continued to turn for the worse this week after Qatar’s foreign ministry issued a statement expressing concern over the death of protesters and the classification of the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organisation. Egypt’s foreign ministry subsequently summoned Qatar’s ambassador in Cairo and called its statement an “unacceptable interference in the internal affairs of the country”.