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Egypt postpones trial of Brotherhood head, 198 Islamists

An Egyptian military court has postponed to March 9 the trial of the Muslim Brotherhood leader and 198 other Islamists over deadly clashes after president Mohamed Morsi`s ouster, an army official said Monday.



Cairo: An Egyptian military court has postponed to March 9 the trial of the Muslim Brotherhood leader and 198 other Islamists over deadly clashes after president Mohamed Morsi`s ouster, an army official said Monday.

Mohamed Badie, 71, facing his first military trial, and the other defendants are accused of participating in clashes that killed 31 people in the canal city of Suez between August 14 and 16, 2013.

The clashes erupted after police brutally broke up two pro-Morsi protest camps in Cairo on August 14 that year.

Hundreds of supporters of Morsi were killed when police stormed their camps in Cairo on that day, just weeks after the Islamist president was ousted by the army.

Badie has already been sentenced by three separate criminal courts to three life terms, and he was also handed down two death sentences that were later overturned on appeal.

An army official said the charges against Badie and others in the military trial include vandalism, inciting violence, murder, assaulting military personnel, and setting five to armoured personnel carriers and two Coptic churches in the city of Suez.

Military tribunals in Egypt have regularly faced criticism for their harsh and swift verdicts.

Egypt`s constitution allows military trials of civilians accused of violence targeting military targets, which include public infrastructure like highways and bridges as well as universities.

Since Morsi`s overthrow in July 2013, the authorities have launched a brutal crackdown against his supporters leaving hundreds dead and thousands jailed after often speedy mass trials.

Morsi himself is facing several trials on charges that are punishable by death, while his Islamist movement has been designated a "terrorist group."

From Zee News

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