Muslim Brotherhood trial relied on single testimony: Human Rights Watch
Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood supporters gather in Ramses square. (AFP/File)
The trial of 51 alleged Muslim Brotherhood supporters in Egypt — who were sentenced to either death or life in prison — relied on the testimony of a single police officer, the Human Rights Watch said Sunday.
The organization said the prosecution had little evidence to support that the defendants did anything other than spread the word about a peaceful protest in Cairo's Rabaa Square in 2013, according to Reuters. The court earlier this month ruled that 14 of the men be sentenced to death, while the other 37 receive life sentences.
The criticism comes two days before Egypt's former president Muhammad Morsi faces a separate trial, in which he may also receive a death sentence.
President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has declared the Brotherhood a threat to national security and since taking rule last year has outlawed the group seen as extremist. The Brotherhood denied the allegations and said it represents a peaceful movement.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Badr Abdelatty told Reuters the HRW's statement was "completely wrong again" and defended the government's judicial system as an independent and open process.
"Nobody can interfere in the work of the judiciary," Abdelatty said. "The whole judicial process and the due process is guaranteed for all accused."
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