Egyptian police raid businesses in latest regime clampdown

Egyptian police raid businesses in latest regime clampdown
Egyptian businesses allegedly linked to the Muslim Brotherhood have been raided by police.
2 min read
25 June, 2019
Egypt has seen a huge clampdown on potential state opponents [file photo]

Egyptian police raided business premises on Tuesday accusing them of funding a plot to "overthrow the state", the interior ministry said.

Egyptian television broadcast footage of officers raiding the businesses in the capital Cairo and the cities of Alexandria and Ismaila.

Cairo said the raids were in response to the businesses allegedly funding a plot "intent on overthrowing the state and its institutions" this month, the interior ministry said in a statement.

Police seized 250 million Egyptian pounds ($15 million) in the raids, according to the ministry video, alleging they were affiliated with the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.

They were part of a plan along with groups "claiming to represent civil political forces" which sought to carry out "violent acts and unrest against the state", according to the interior ministry.

At least eight people were arrested, including businessmen, journalists and political figures such as prominent human rights lawyer Zyad el-Elaimy.

His mother Ekram Youssef said he was visiting a friend in Maadi, a Cairo suburb, when he was arrested in the early hours of Tuesday.

"Some people grabbed him so he started shouting to his friend. He eventually cooperated with them once the friend came," she told AFP.

Elaimy played a key role in the movement that unseated autocrat Hosni Mubarak in 2011 and he subsequently served as a lawmaker for a year.

Since the 2013 military overthrow of elected Brotherhood president Mohamed Morsi - who died last week after collapsing in court - there has been a widespread crackdown on dissent.

Thousands of Islamists and secular pro-democracy activists have been jailed following trials criticised internationally, while Egypt says it is countering terrorism.