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Mohamed Al-Zawahiri referred to criminal court

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Brother of Al-Qaeda head and 67 others will stand trial for a list of terror-related charges

Islamist leader Mohamed Al-Zawahiri has been referred to criminal court along with 67 others, announced the Prosecutor General’s office on Sunday.

The brother of Ayman Al-Zawahiri, leader of Al-Qaeda, was accused by the prosecution of establishing and managing a terrorist organisation.

The defence in the case is accused of “establishing and managing a terrorist organisation” and targeting Egyptian authorities, changing the regime by force, attacking military and police facilities and property, and targeting Copts and their places of worship.

Al-Zawahiri was found guilty and sentenced to death in absentia in the 1999 “Returnees from Albania” trial. He was then extradited by the United Arab Emirates and was in jail until 2011 by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces among other detainees considered to be political prisoners. Al-Zawahiri was then arrested only days later and was acquitted and released in 2012.

Three days after the dispersal of the pro-Mohamed Morsi sit-ins at Rabaa Al-Adaweya and Nahda Square, security forces arrested Al-Zawahiri in Giza. He was reportedly caught while attempting to pass through a police checkpoint, where security officials identified him.

Dawoud Khairat Seliman, the former aide to Al-Zawahiri, was arrested at a Cairo security checkpoint and was accused of providing arms to the sit-in at Rabaa Al-Adaweya.

Last month the Ministry of Interior announced that it had arrested Mohamed Ahmed Al-Taliawy and described him as a “dangerous terrorist” with alleged connections to Al-Zawahiri. The ministry also posted an alleged confession after Al-Taliawy was detained.

The prosecution on Sunday added that 50 of the defendants were in detention and would remain there, while 18 of the accused had not yet been detained.

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