The outlawed Muslim Brotherhood has called for massive protests on Friday, 19 June after the Egyptian court upheld the death sentence of expelled president Mohammed Morsi, even as the world condemned the verdict.
Morsi, the first democratically elected leader of Egypt, was sentenced to death along with several other senior figures of the Brotherhood, which was banned after President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi took over.
The enraged Islamist organisation has called for supporters to take part in the “popular uprising,” dubbing the court’s verdict a “sham.”
Given that almost all of the senior figures of the Brotherhood are imprisoned and the group’s movements heavily curtailed by the ruling government, it is still unclear whether the protests by the Brotherhood – which was once responsible for toppling dictator Hosni Mubarak in 2011 – will have any impact in Egypt.
“The Egyptian judicial system has become completely politicised. The many hundreds currently sentenced to death have not been afforded the basic protection of their right to a fair trial and due process before an independent judiciary,” wrote Sondos Essam, a former Brotherhood spokesperson, who currently resides in the UK. Essam is the only woman among the 100 people, whose death sentences have been upheld in the Wadi Natroun jailbreak case.
Meanwhile, condemnation has been pouring in immediately after the Cairo court announced the judgement.
Scores of leaders have chided the Cairo administration headed by al-Sisi, a former general, for the move.
Calling the death sentences a “massacre of law and basic rights,” Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said: “We call on the international community to act to withdraw these death sentences, given under the instructions of the coup regime, and to put an end to this path which could seriously endanger the peace of Egyptian society.”
A statement from the White House spokesperson Josh Earnest read: “We are deeply troubled by the politically motivated sentences that have been handed down against former president Morsi and several others by an Egyptian court today.”
The UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has also expressed strong concerns over the death penalty.