Egyptian Security Forces are enforcing the recently passed ban on protests by al-Qaeda linked Muslim Brotherhood/Morsi supporters. No such ban is in effect in New York City…unfortunately.
Washington Free Beacon A group of Egyptians sympathetic to former President Mohmamed Morsi are gearing up to stage a demonstration along the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade route in New York City, according to organizers. Several hundred activists are expected to show up to the march, which is being called “Rabaa on Thanksgiving in Manhattan.” The name is a reference to Egypt’s Rabaa Square, where backers of Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood gathered to protest the coup until being violently disbursed by the military in August.
Sherif Ahmed, an Egyptian activist and march organizer, said the demonstrators are outraged by what they say are violent crimes and atrocities carried out by the Egyptian military since Morsi was deposed. (The only violence in Egypt is perpetrated by the Morsi supporters. Security forces are backed by the vast majority of Egyptians, both Muslim and Christian)
It is inappropriate for the Egyptian activists to demonstrate during one of America’s biggest holidays. “Here we see a hallmark of agenda-driven groups—namely trying to use a treasured American holiday and one of the most visible events of that day, the Macy’s Thanksgiving parade, to push their foreign grievances and agenda,” said national security correspondent and terrorism expert Patrick Poole. “And it should be no surprise that at the head of this business is a man identified by the Egyptian media as a senior U.S. Muslim Brotherhood leader.”
Egypt jails Brotherhood women, arrests hundreds of illegal pro-Muslim Brotherhood/Morsi rioters.
AFP Cairo – Egyptian authorities Wednesday jailed 14 women said to be Muslim Brotherhood members for 11 years, and ordered the arrest of two leading activists for demonstrating against a disputed protest law.
A court in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria sentenced the 14 women who it said were from the Brotherhood after convicting them of belonging to a “terrorist organization,” judicial sources said.
It also sentenced six men, said to be Brotherhood leaders, to 15 years, the sources said, adding the convicted women were immediately transferred to prison. The men, tried in absentia, were found guilty of inciting the women to block key roads in the city during clashes between supporters and opponents of ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi on October 31.
Seven girls in the same group on trial were sent to a juvenile detention centre until they reach the age of 18, state media said. Their sentencing is the latest in an ongoing government crackdown against Morsi’s supporters since the army toppled him on July 3.
More than 1,000 people have been killed in the crackdown and during clashes between pro- and anti-Morsi groups, while thousands have been arrested, mostly armed Islamists, in the often deadly crackdown.
On Tuesday, the authorities appeared to widen their campaign when police crushed protests by secular and pro-democracy groups against a law passed at the weekend regulating demonstrations.
The law requires protest organisers to give at least three days’ written notice before holding demonstrations. Police used water cannon and tear gas to disperse Tuesday’s demonstrations.
The suppression of mainly secular youths is seen as the opening of a new front by the authorities, which justified Morsi’s ouster by saying it was responding to massive demonstrations against his rule.
Tuesday’s clampdown triggered a stand-off between authorities and some prominent activists who led the revolt against long-time ruler Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
Tempers flared Wednesday when the general prosecutor ordered the arrest of Ahmed Maher, founder of the April 6 movement that spearheaded the 2011 revolt against Mubarak, and Alaa Abdel Fattah, a prominent activist.
“The two are accused of inciting protesters to hold demonstrations that broke the protest law,” the prosecution said, according to state news agency MENA. The report added that 24 other protesters who joined the demonstration had been ordered detained for four days.
Judiciary and other sources said about 60 protesters were detained, including prominent activist Mona Seif, founder of a campaign against military trials of civilians. She was held after joining a protest on Tuesday outside the Shura Council, where Egypt’s new constitution is being drafted.
Seif and a group of 15 other women and 12 men were later released in the middle of the night on a desert road some 10 kilometres (about six miles) south of Cairo.
“The ministry of interior alleges that each one of us had been dropped at her house, which means that all of us are living in the desert,” Seif wrote on Twitter. The interior ministry later approved a demonstration against the protest law in downtown Cairo’s Talat al-Harb Square which hundreds of people attended Wednesday.
Analysts were puzzled by the law, especially since the revised constitution would guarantee freedom of expression. Egypt’s cabinet, however, vowed to press on with its enforcement of the law.
“The cabinet will support the police in implementing the law with full force and determination. It respects the freedom of expression but as long as it does not turn into chaos,” it said.
Under the law, security forces must first verbally warn protesters at prohibited demonstrations to disperse before using water cannon or tear gas, and should only gradually escalate to the firing of birdshot if other means fail.