An Egyptian court has sentenced 75 people to death, including senior leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood, over a 2013 sit-in protest in Cairo that ended with the killing of hundreds of protesters.
Senior Brotherhood leaders Essam el-Erian and Mohamed Beltagi were sentenced to death, while Mohamed Badie, the Brotherhood’s spiritual leader, was handed a life sentence.
Prominent photojournalist Mahmoud Abu Zeid, also known as Shawkan, was handed a five-year sentence but should walk free for time served. He was arrested in August 2013 while covering the killings in Cairo.
Lawyers for Shawkan said he would be out in a “few days”.
In addition to Badie, 46 people were handed life sentences, while 612 other defendants received prison terms ranging from five to 15 years after a mass trial in Cairo.
Those sentenced on Saturday are accused of security-related offences, including incitement to violence and organising illegal protests.
Amnesty International condemned the mass sentences as a “disgrace”.
“The fact that not a single police officer has been brought to account for the killing of at least 900 people in the Rabaa and Nahda protests shows what a mockery of justice this trial was,” said Nadia Bounaim, Amnesty’s North Africa director, in a statement.