Turkey, Hamas, rights group condemn Mursi death sentence

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Turkey, the rights group Amnesty International, and Hamas have all criticized Egypt on Saturday for sentencing former President Mohammed Mursi to death.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned that Egypt was returning to “old Egypt.”

Erdogan also criticized western nations for not speaking out against Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah Al Sisi, who ousted Mursi, and for not condemning the death sentences being handed down to the former Islamist president’s Muslim Brotherhood group.

“While the West is abolishing the death penalty, they are just watching the continuation of death sentences in Egypt. They don’t do anything about it,” the Turkish president was quoted by state-run Anatolian news agency as saying.

The rights group Amnesty International also spoke against the ruling describing it as “a charade based on null and void procedures,” and demanded that Mursi be released and retired.

Meanwhile, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum condemned the ruling against Mursi and dozens of Palestinians, calling it “a crime against the Palestinian people.”

Hamas, who is in charge of the Gaza Strip, is an offshoot of the international Muslim Brotherhood movement and has long been seen as Mursi’s ally.

There were 105 defendants with Mursi who were sentenced to death, most of them were tried and convicted in absentia. They include some 70 Palestinians. Those tried in absentia in Egypt receive automatic retrials once detained.

The Brotherhood, meanwhile, says it is a peaceful organization with no links to violence.

Brotherhood calls for action
Muslim Brotherhood official Amr Darrag condemned the court’s decision and called on the international community to take action.

“This is a political verdict and represents a murder crime that is about to be committed, and it should be stopped by the international community,” Darrag, co-founder of the dissolved Freedom and Justice Party, the political wing of the Brotherhood, told Reuters in Istanbul.

The party said in an online statement the ruling “opened all options to rid the country of this gang which seized power by force.”

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