Egypt blames Hamas, Muslim Brotherhood for Barakat assassination
Egyptian security forces stand guard at the site of a bomb that targeted the convoy of the Egyptian state prosecutor, Hisham Barakat, in the capital Cairo on June 29, 2015. (AFP/File)
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Egypt's interior minister accused the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) and the Muslim Brotherhood of involvement in the assassination of late prosecutor general Hisham Barakat.
In a televised press conference Sunday, Interior Minister Magdy Abdel Ghaffar said the two groups planned and implemented Barakat's assassination on Jun. 29, 2015.
The interior minister said Brotherhood member Yehia Moussa issued the decision to kill Barakat. Moussa, who was the former spokesman of the health ministry during the rule of ousted president Mohamed Morsi, is a fugitive in Turkey.
According to Abdel Ghaffar, Moussa had led a group of Brotherhood members in Egypt to commit a number of other operations.
He added that a Hamas cadre in Gaza was involved in the assassination.
The interior minister said that the number of people involved in Barakat's assassination is 14, all of whom were arrested.
All people involved in the operation received training on explosives, preparing Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and military training, Abdel Ghaffar added.
Barakat's assassination makes him the most senior state official killed since militant attacks surged in Egypt in mid-2013.
Egypt listed the Brotherhood as a terrorist organisation in December 2013 and insists it is behind the wave of militancy which has targeted security personnel since July 2013. The Brotherhood continuously denies the accusations.
Egyptian authorities have also accused Hamas, a strong ally of Morsi's regime, of supporting these militant attacks but Hamas has repeatedly denied the accusations.