World Bulletin/News Desk
Interim Prime Minister Hazem al-Beblawi has asserted that no party which supports Egypt's army-imposed "roadmap" would be excluded from the country's political process.
"Any side that agrees to the roadmap, renounces violence, terrorism and incitement, and is not wanted by the law will find a place in Egypt's future political scene," al-Beblawi said in a Monday press statement.
Egypt's powerful army announced a roadmap for Egypt's political future after its July 3 ouster of president Mohamed Morsi following mass protests against the latter's administration.
Under the plan, the constitution was suspended and Adly Mansour, head of Egypt's constitutional court, was named interim president – steps ostensibly aimed at paving the way for holding parliamentary and presidential polls within nine months.
Except for the Salafist Nour Party, most Egyptian Islamist groups rejected the roadmap, describing the unconstitutional change of government as an illegitimate "military coup."
Egyptian authorities, meanwhile, have unleashed a massive crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood leaders and members since the bloody August 14 dispersal of two pro-Morsi protest camps in which hundreds of demonstrators were killed by security forces.
"Those who have been recently arrested were wanted on arrest warrants for criminal charges. No one was arrested arbitrarily or due to political motivations," al-Beblawi said in the statement.
"Those arrested face ordinary [as opposed to military] prosecution and are being tried in accordance with ordinary laws and with no exceptional measures," he said.
The interim premier also addressed the issue of the military prosecution of civilians charged with involvement in attacks on military personnel and property, saying these represented "isolated cases."
Earlier this month, the army announced that one person had been sentenced to life in prison by a Suez military court for alleged involvement in attacks on military personnel and churches.
Another 52 defendants, many of them members of the Muslim Brotherhood and Gamaa Islamiya groups, were slapped with jail terms of varying length, he said.
Several legal activists decried the stiff sentences, voicing concern over the renewed practice of trying civilians before military tribunals.Last Mod: 16 Eylül 2013, 17:44