October 27: first-time appeal by the MB against Military tribunal
For the first time in history, an appeal filed by Al Shater and his companions concerning MB military trials is scheduled for October 27.
The Military Court of Cessation set October 27, as a date to consider an appeal submitted by Eng. Khairat Al-Shater, the second deputy chairman of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) and 17 other leading MB leaders against the sentence that had been imposed on them by a court-martial for military offenses in the wake of an exercise demonstration organized at Al-Azhar University by Muslim Brotherhood students.
Abdel-Moneim Abdel-Maksoud, the Muslim Brotherhood’s lawyer, has said that the appeal does not mean recognition of the legitimacy and constitutionality of military tribunals. He stated "the ruling regime’s setting up of such courts is a flagrant violation of law and charter of human rights, the law stipulates that any individual has the right to be tried before a conventional judge and not be forwarded to exceptional courts or military courts in particular."
The military court had sentenced El-Shater and businessman Hassan Malek to 7-year prison terms in April 2008, for joining and financing a banned group. The court also jailed five of the group’s leaders abroad, including Youssef Nada, chairman of al Taqwa Bank in Switzerland. The court upheld the verdict in July 13, 2008.
The MB has expressed its refusal to recognize the Military Court’s rulings and Abdel-Maksoud said that the Brotherhood is not only refusing the referral of its leading figures to military tribunals but also completely rejects the existence of these courts and objects that any citizen stand trial before military courts, whether belong to the Brotherhood or any other political faction.
He expressed the hope that the referral of Eng. Khairat Al-Shater and his companions to the military Court of Cessation be corrected. Abdul Maqsoud continued that "the regime’s unjust methods against the movement especially after the unprecedented escalation of State Security Service campaigns against Muslim Brotherhood members in Egypt’s governorates during the past few weeks and directing positive messages to the Muslim Brotherhood must end."
He noted that Engineer Al-Shater’s group was subjected to grave injustice more than any other group in the Muslim Brotherhood. The group members were arrested and brought to stand before military trial in accordance with the so-called "Emergency Law." Their money was confiscated, their wives and children were prevented from using their money and property, their private businesses has been closed down and their employees displaced.
Engineer Al-Shater concluded by demanding the ruling regime lift the injustices against Al-Shater’s group, revealing that the seriousness of the military courts amendments as not merely an attempt to improve the special courts’ bad image in reference to the amendment which allows challenging appeals on the military court’s rulings.
On the another note, the Supreme State Security Court yesterday decided that 8 head officials of the MB administrative offices in Cairo and Giza remain in custody for a further 15-days, led by Sayed Nozely, general coordinator of the MB administrative office in Giza, Hamdi Ibrahim, Mohi Al-Zayet, Karem Mahmoud, Ismail Salim and Ayman Hodhod.
This comes at a time when the State Security Services continue to raid the homes of Muslim Brotherhood leaders and arrest its active members that have participated in demonstrations and mass protests against Israeli aggression and attempts by Jewish extremists to storm the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Security forces Wednesday raided the houses of many Brotherhood members in Sharqiya and arrested 11 of the group’s leading figures Zagazig: Menya Alqamh, Derb Negm, Haheya and Abo Kabir where they searched their houses confiscating computers and large quantities of books and CDs.
The detainees are: Dr. Nagi Sakr (Surgeon and the Muslim Brotherhood candidate in 2007 Shura Council elections- Zagazig),
Eng. Kamal El-Din Attia (Director General at Nuclear Materials Authority and leading Brotherhood figure in Sharqiya, Al-azeezia- Menya Alqamh)
Ezzat Gharib (Employee at Al-Azhar Al-Sharif and the Brotherhood’s candidate in 2007 Shura Council elections- Meet Suhail, Menya Alqamh)
Atef Rashid (Financial and administrative Director at Sharqia Doctors’ Syndicate- Zaqaziq),
Dr. Ibrahim Jabr (Pharmacist-Derb Negm)
Dr. Tarek Alrusas (Dentist-Derb Negm)
Mohamed Gouda (Businessman- Menya Alqamh)
Muhammad Murad (Teacher at Al-Azhar, Al-Awamra- Abu Kabir)
Ahmed Maghawri (Businessman, Abu Kabir)
Mamdouh Murad (Imam and preacher- Hihya)
Alsayed Nagar (local council staff – Hihya).
In a related issue Sheik Mahdy Helal an imam and preacher turned himself in to Derb Negm Prosecution after Security forces raided his house on the pretext of organizing a rally protesting to the barbaric invasion of Al-Aqsa mosque.
The Muslim Brotherhood members in Sharqia governorate last Friday organized more than 120 public protests in various towns and villages at the same governorate denouncing the Israeli occupation forces’ violations of Al-Aqsa mosque. Nearly 20 000 citizens took part in the street demonstrations.
The Muslim Brotherhood sources have estimated that the recent detentions have involved more than 357 members of the group in the Sharqia governorate since the beginning of this year where 87 detainees have remained in custody so far.