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Egypt: Women Sentenced to Prison Term for Anti-Government Demonstration

(Dec. 12, 2013) On November 27, 2013, the Felony Court of Alexandria, Egypt convicted and sentenced to 11 years in prison 14 young women of the Muslim Brotherhood movement, on charges of participating in demonstrations held during the month of October 2013 in the city of <!–?Alexandria. The indictment by the general prosecution accused the women of joining a terrorist organization, using force, and disturbing the public peace. (Egyptian Court Sentences Young Women of the Brotherhood to 11 Years in Prison [in Arabic], ASHARQ AL AWSAT (Nov. 28, 2013).)

The women were demonstrating against the ouster of the former president Mohammed Morsi and demanding his reinstatement. The lawyer for the women declared that his clients had appealed the verdict, and a hearing was set for December 7, 2013. (Egypt Court to Hear 21 Female Protestors’ Appeals, PRESS TV (Dec. 1, 2013).)

The Felony Court also sentenced to 15 years in prison, in absentia, six leaders of the Brotherhood movement. Another seven persons, underage girls who participated in the same demonstration, were convicted by the Juvenile Court of Alexandria and sentenced to be held in a juvenile detention center until they reach 18 years of age. (Egyptian Court Sentences Young Women of the Brotherhood to 11 Years in Prison, supra.)

The Appellate Court that reviewed the case decided on December 7 to retain the conviction, but reduced the sentence to a suspended one-year sentence for the 14 adult women and to a three-month probation period for the seven juvenile girls. (Egypt Frees 21 Female Pro-Morsi Protesters After International Outcry, THE GUARDIAN (Dec. 7, 2013).)