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Morsi espionage trial postponed

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Court set to listen to more witnesses in ongoing case

Former president Mohamed Morsi (AFP File PHOTO/ MANAN VATSYAYANA)

Ousted president Mohamed Morsi
(AFP File PHOTO/ MANAN VATSYAYANA)

The Cairo Criminal Court postponed ousted president Mohamed Morsi’s espionage trial to June 29 to listen to more witnesses after a closed session on Monday.

Morsi and 35 members of the Muslim Brotherhood, including some of its most high-profile members, stand trial for collaborating with foreign groups. Others on trial include Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie, his deputies Khairat El-Shater and Mahmoud Ezzat, and leaders of the group’s political wing Saad Al-Katatni, Mohamed Al-Beltagy and Essam El-Erian.

The defendants are accused of organising “a plot” with the aid of groups including Palestinian Islamist group Hamas and Lebanese militant group Hezbollah. They also face charges of disclosing of national security secrets, funding terrorism, and coordination with jihadist organisations inside and outside Egypt, to execute terrorist operations inside Egyptian territory.

There are currently 20 detainees on trial, while the prosecution ordered the quick arrest of 16 others. The prosecution statement that circulated when the defendants were referred to court in December described the trial as “the biggest case of espionage in the history of Egypt”.

Morsi is charged in three other cases, accused of breaking out of prison in January 2011, insulting the judiciary and inciting the killing of protesters outside the Itihadiya Palace in December 2012.

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Aya Nader

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