Egypt arrests 29 for 'espionage for Turkey,' plotting to restore the Muslim Brotherhood to power
Egypt’s public prosecutor ordered the detention on Wednesday following an investigation conducted by the General Intelligence Services purportedly showing that the group had been recording phone calls and passing information to the Turkish intelligence as part of a plan to restore the Muslim Brotherhood back to power.
The defendants are also accused of money laundering and trading currency without a licence.
Relations between Ankara and Cairo have been strained ever since the military forcibly removed Egypt’s first democratically elected president Mohammad Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate.
After the ousting of President Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood party was declared a 'terrorist organisation' by Egypt and banned, and security forces cracked down on all opposition and dissenters. Thousands have been arrested with rights groups estimating 60,000 political detainees.
Last month, President Sisi claimed that there were "no political prisoners" in Egypt.
The ousted president has been sentenced to life in an 'espionage' trial accusing him of spying for Qatar and leaking classified documents during his single year as president.
He has also been sentenced to death in a separate trial for his alleged role in prison breaks and attacks on police stations during the 2011 uprising, a life sentence and twenty-year jail term in two other trials.