A harsh sentence has been handed down to 529 supporters of the former Egyptian leader. President Mohamed Morsi was thrown out of office by massive crowds of protesters, but there were some who still supported him throughout the backlash. Those who were on trial near Cairo were given stiff sentences for their involvement in attacking the police, as well as participating in the murder of a police officer last August. Some people fear that the swiftness with which these verdicts were handed out are a sign of political backlash in the justice system against Morsi and his supporters.
Egypt Sentencing 529 Morsi Supporters To Death
There are many Egyptians, and human rights activists who would like to see these death sentences overturned, in favor of less severe sentences. There will likely be appeals to these verdicts made in court, but perhaps not all of them will be overturned. Some skeptics even wonder if the verdicts were even fair in the first place, as the courts reached their decisions in a swift manner and decided to punish nearly all of the accused in a mass verdict. When the sentences were handed out to the defendants, the defense lawyers were not even able to be in attendance, which others deem as unfair to the accused as well. Security forces outside of the court house held the defense lawyers at bay while their clients listened to their possible fate.
What makes this situation even worse is that the majority of the accused and convicted in this trial were not even present in court, and had no means to defend themselves against this death sentence. Defense lawyers were not given enough time to properly examine all of the documents that supposedly contained information about their clients, and during the first court session when the defense lawyers were allowed to attend most of their requests were denied.
Even supporters of the current regime fear that this mass decision in their courts will cause issues for them. Some feel that this rash decision will lead to scrutiny of their court system, as well as deteriorate some of their support from abroad. What seems like a revenge attack on the Muslim Brotherhood who controversially ran the Egyptian government under Morsi’s control could potentially backfire in their faces if local and foreign political aid comes to a halt because of these verdicts.
Featured image of Egyptian Court from Wikipedia.
Egypt Sentencing 529 Morsi Supporters To Death.