Morsi's death ruling draws mixed reactions in Egypt

Morsi's death ruling draws mixed reactions in Egypt

A death sentence against Egypt's ousted President Mohamed Morsi and more than 100 other people on Saturday received mixed reactions across the country, Anadolu Agency reported.

While pro-Morsi rights activists condemn the ruling, expecting it to weaken the credibility of Egypt's judiciary, Morsi's opponents describe the same ruling as "fulfilling."

Earlier on Saturday, a court sent a notice to Egypt's religious authority to give its opinion before Morsi and 121 other people - out of a total of 166 people - were sentenced to death.

Morsi and other co-defendants were accused of mass prison break during the 2011 uprising that later ousted then President Hosni Mubarak.

The 121 other defendants included the Muslim Brotherhood supreme leader Mohamed Badie and his deputy Khairat al-Shater, along with several other movement top leaders.

The opinion of the religious authority [the grand mufti] is non-binding.

The ruling against the ex-president and his co-defendants are also subject to appeal.

Nevertheless, it was met with anger from Morsi's supporters.

The National Alliance for the Defense of Legitimacy - Morsi's principal support bloc - denounced the verdict and called for escalating opposition to the current authorities, especially on July 3, the day on which Morsi was deposed by the army two years ago after mass protests against his one-year rule.

Aisha, a daughter of deputy Brotherhood supreme leader Khairat al-Shater, meanwhile, said the potential death sentence issued her father demonstrated the "injustice and fascism" of Egypt's justice system.

She said her family did not recognize the trial and that this family would continue to oppose the current authorities along with other "revolutionaries who fight for freedom, dignity and justice".

Egyptian journalist Gamal Sultan, for his part, said on Twitter that the conflict in Egypt was political, not legal, in nature.

"This is why the biggest loser in Morsi's execution is al-Sisi [the Egyptian president] and his regime," Sultan said.

Nevertheless, some other people did not share this point of view.

Lawyer Tarek al-Khouli - known for his opposition to the Muslim Brotherhood, the movement from which Morsi hails - applauded the death sentence against Morsi and other co-defendants.

He said such verdicts represented the end for people [Morsi and other Brotherhood leaders] who "betrayed" their country and "pushed it toward destruction".

"Egypt, which had miraculously survived the evils of those pretend-Islamists before, will prevail in its current battle against them," al-Khouli said in a statement.

Activist Mohamed Hussein, a coordinator of the anti-Brotherhood Tamarod movement, praised the death sentence.

"Today is a happy one for all Egyptians," Hussein said. "Egyptians have waited for this ruling against these traitors for long," he added.

The government always stresses the independence of the judiciary, noting that this judiciary has nothing to do with politics.

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