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Court legalises Muslim Brotherhood ‘terrorist group’ designation

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Muslim Brotherhood spokeswoman Wafaa Al-Banna accused authorities of “acting whichever way they want.”

Muslim brotherhood logoBy Aya Nader

The Cairo Court for Urgent Matters issued an order declaring the Muslim Brotherhood a banned terrorist organisation on Monday.

The cabinet declared the Brotherhood a terrorist organisation on 25 December 2013.

“The cabinet’s decision was an administrative one that can be appealed,” said Lawyer Hamdy Al-Fakharany, “The court’s decision is final.”

Muslim Brotherhood spokeswoman Wafaa Al-Banna accused authorities of “acting whichever way they want.”

“They arrested and accused people [of being members of a terrorist group] before any court order, so do they care about the court order?” she said.

El-Banna asserted that the authorities are “gangsters who want to force their opinion on the people.”

“Everything done after the 30 June [protests that lead to ousting of former president Mohammed Morsi] is void,” she said.

Since Morsi was ousted from office in July, the number of arrests has greatly increased. More than 1,000 people were arrested on the 25 January Revolution’s third anniversary. A number of students, journalists and protesters have been detained with the charge of belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood “terrorist” group.

The cabinet, which resigned Monday, announced that the organisation will be legally accountable under Article 86 of the Egyptian Penal Code. The law stipulates that terrorism “shall include all use of force, violence, threatening, or frightening, which a felon resorts to in execution of an individual or collective criminal scheme, with the aim of disturbing public order, or exposing the safety and security of society to danger.”

Members of any group that the government has deemed a terrorist organisation will face a sentence not exceeding five years in prison.

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