Egypt Junta Orders More Mass Trials: Over 2100 Now Face Death

Many Are Being Tried in Absentia for Links to Ousted Govt

Egypt’s presumptive new president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has promised his regime won’t engage in punitive action against its rivals, but that promise may be merely academic given the rate at which the junta is ordering mass trials and mass executions.

The first round of executions, ordered Monday, covered 529 pro-Morsi protesters, ordered killed as “terrorists” because a protest led to the death of a single junta police officer.

The international community barely had time to express outrage at that before the same judge was given another mass trial of supporters of the ousted election government, this time 683 more facing execution on similar pretexts.

Not stopping there, the junta’s chief prosecutor announced two new mass trials of “suspected Islamists,” one covering 715 people accused of involvement in rallies against government buildings in August, and another of 204 detainees accused of “inciting violence” by opposing the summer coup.

All told, that brings the number on trial or already sentenced to death to 2,131. Many of them are already in detention by the military, though a large number from today’s new trials haven’t even been arrested yet, and the mass trial order is to either try them in absentia or capture them sometime before the trial begins.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.