Middle East

Egyptian Court Acquits Morsi Supporters, Journalist

A Cairo court has acquitted more than 60 supporters of deposed President Mohammed Morsi and an Al Jazeera journalist arrested last year.

Egyptian Court Acquits Morsi Supporters, Journalist
Al Ahram / Mai Shaheen
SMS

An Egyptian court has acquitted more than 60 supporters of deposed President Mohammed Morsi who were arrested during a protest last year.  The men, many of whom have been linked to the now-banned Muslim Brotherhood, had been accused of attempted murder for inciting the violence and rioting that left seven dead during a protest in Cairo last July. (Via CNN)

The Cairo court also acquitted an Al Jazeera photojournalist who had been held without charge since that July protest. His acquittal comes amid a wider crackdown on both the Muslim Brotherhood and the journalists covering it. The organization was designated by Egypt's interim government as a terrorist group late last December. The BBC reports just last week, Egyptian prosecutors filed criminal charges against 20 other Al Jazeera journalists for "aiding a terrorist group" and endangering national security. Among that group is Australian correspondent Peter Greste, who was arrested in December. (Via Al Jazeera)

He wrote a letter his producers at Al Jazeera late January discussing a neglect of prisoner rights at his south Cairo prison. "Authorities routinely violate legally enshrined prisoners' rights, denying visits from lawyers, keeping cells locked for 20 hours a day and so on. But even that is relatively benign compared to the conditions my colleagues are being held in." Egypt's interim government has long accused Al Jazeera of being pro-Brotherhood, although Al Jazeera rejects that claim. Hundreds of suspected Brotherhood supporters and journalists have been arrested since Morsi's ouster last summer. (Via Press TV)

Morsi is currently on trial for several charges, including inciting the murder of protestors before his government was overthrown, which carries the death penalty.  (Via BBC)

Hundreds of Egyptians have been killed in the protests since Morsi was removed from power. The former president has questioned the legality of his trial and told the court he is still the legitimate leader of the country.