Cairo: More than 100 supporters of Egypt’s deposed Islamist President Mohammad Mursi were sentenced to ten years in jail on Saturday on charges of killing and inciting violence, judicial sources said.
The verdicts for the 102 defendants, handed down ahead of a May 26-27 presidential election, relate to deaths that occurred during clashes in Cairo last July between supporters of Mursi’s Muslim Brotherhood and security forces.
Two other Brotherhood supporters who were defendants in the case received seven-year jail sentences, the sources said. Only 35 defendants were present in court, the others were tried in absentia.
Militant violence has spiralled since last July, when the army toppled Mursi and the authorities launched a crackdown on his supporters in the Brotherhood. Thousands of the movement’s supporters have been arrested and hundreds killed, and its leaders are on trial.
Another Egyptian court sentenced the leader of the Brotherhood and 682 supporters to death earlier this week, intensifying the crackdown and drawing Western criticism.
Egypt has declared the Brotherhood a terrorist group, but Egypt’s oldest Islamist movement says it is committed to peaceful activism.