Egypt arrests 13 Brotherhood members on Rabaa massacre anniversary

Egypt arrests 13 Brotherhood members on Rabaa massacre anniversary
The arrests come on the fifth anniversary of the largest mass killing in Egypt's history, when police fired on supporters of Mohammed Morsi.
2 min read
14 August, 2018
Women protesting on fourth anniversary of Rabaa massacre [Getty]

Egyptian police arrested 13 alleged members of the Muslim Brotherhood on Tuesday, exactly five years to the day marking the Rabaa massacre. 

The Interior Ministry said that six were arrested in a Cairo suburb, including three who had been sentenced in absentia to 10-15 years on terror charges. They will now face a retrial. The other seven were detained northwest of the capital.

On 14 August, 2013, police dispersed two mass sit-ins by supporters of President Mohammed Morsi, who had been overthrown by the military earlier that summer amid mass protests against his rule. Security forces killed at least 817 people, with some estimates putting the death toll at more than 1,000.

It was the largest mass killing in Egypt's history. 

Morsi was a senior figure in the Muslim Brotherhood, which is now outlawed as a terror group. Egypt has detained thousands of Islamists since 2013.

On Monday, Human Rights Watch called for an international inquiry into the massacre. They said Egyptian authorities have failed to investigate or prosecute a single member of the security forces responsible for the crackdown at Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya Square.

Instead, it noted, hundreds of peaceful protesters have been convicted since in unfair mass trials, aimed at crushing all dissent to President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi's regime. 

Last month, Sisi approved a law that grants military commanders "immunity" from prosecution or questioning for any event between 3 July 2013 and 2016. Already, military officers can only be investigated by military prosecutors who works for the Defence Ministry.

Meanwhile, days earlier a Cairo court handed Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Badie and other senior members life sentences. 

Agencies contributed to this report. 

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