Egypt arrests Muslim Brotherhood leaders

The Muslim Brotherhood said police rounded up several of its top leaders, including Deputy General Guide Mahmoud Ezzat and spokesman Essam El-Erian.

Egypt arrests Muslim Brotherhood leaders

The Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt’s biggest opposition group, said police rounded up several of its top leaders, including Deputy General Guide Mahmoud Ezzat and spokesman Essam El-Erian.

Police also detained Abdel-Rahman El-Berr, who is a member of the Guidance Council, the Brotherhood’s top executive body. The group reported the detentions on its Web site on Monday.

Security forces raided the homes of deputy leader Mahmoud Ezzat, a member of the governing body Essam al-Erian and other senior members early on Monday and detained them, a lawyer said.

"These 14 arrests net a number of leading members following the internal elections and ahead of parliamentary elections," lawyer Abdel-Moneim Abdel-Maksoud said.

"This is part of the state's campaign against the group. The group is now getting ready for parliamentary elections and this campaign is to stem such activities," said Mohamed el-Katatni, a member of group's guidance bureau.

Mohammed Badie, who was picked as leader in January, told Reuters the group was committed to vigorously campaigning in the parliamentary election but said a state crackdown would likely prevent a repeat of the success achieved in 2005.

Security forces detained 20 other members of the Brotherhood on Saturday and Sunday.

The Brotherhood is widely seen as the only opposition group capable of mobilising thousands of disciplined supporters in protest against the government, but its members are regularly rounded up before votes for national or local bodies.

Agencies

Last Mod: 08 Şubat 2010, 11:20
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