Security agencies in Alexandria arrested Tuesday two students for running an anti-government Facebook page.
The two students ran a Facebook page entitled “Ultras Eagles of Freedom” that posted calls for demonstrations and content against the government, police, army and judiciary, according to a Ministry of Interior statement.
According to the ministry, the defendants were faced with the charges against them and confessed to running the page, belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood, taking part in several protests, and involvement in assaulting a police officer.
One of the arrested admitted taking part in the 2013 Rabaa Al-Adaweya sit-in in Cairo, and involvement in attempts to torch two police stations in Alexandria.
Egypt’s controversial Protest Law, issued in 2013, restricts public gatherings and only allows protests after authorisation from the Ministry of Interior has been given. The law has been contested before the Supreme Constitutional Court since 2014.
On Saturday, three men were also arrested over activities on Facebook. The men, who are accused of spreading “Islamic State” propaganda via the social network, are all from the Upper Egypt governorate of Sohag. It is understood that two of the men, who are veterinarian students, posted videos that sought to “spread Islamic State jihadi views”, according to a statement by the Sohag security directorate.
Egypt’s new Anti-Terrorism Law sets a minimum prison sentence of five years for individuals who use social media and communication networks to incite terrorist acts. The legislation has come under fire from rights bodies and journalists, who say that it is severe and unduly expands the government’s powers.