MORSI GIVEN LIFE IN PRISON
Former president Morsi gets 25 years in prison
An Egyptian court has sentenced six people to death, including two Al Jazeera employees, for allegedly passing documents related to national security to Qatar and the Doha-based TV network during the rule of extremist President Mohammed Morsi.
Morsi, the case’s top defendant, and two of his aides were also sentenced to 25 years in prison. Morsi and his secretary, Amin El Sirafy, each received an additional 15-year sentence for a lesser crime. El Sirafy’s daughter, Karima, was also sentenced to 15 years in prison.
Morsi, Egypt’s first freely elected leader, was ousted by the military in July 2013 and has already been sentenced to death in another case. That death sentence and another two others - life and 20 years in prison - are under appeal.
All of yesterday’s verdicts can be appealed. Of the case’s 11 defendants, seven, including Morsi, are in custody.
Amnesty International called for the death sentences to be immediately thrown out and for the “ludicrous charges against the journalists to be dropped”.
The two Al Jazeera employees - identified by the judge as news producer Alaa Omar Mohammed and news editor Ibrahim Mohammed Hilal - were sentenced to death in absentia along with Asmaa Al Khateib, who worked for Rasd, a media network widely suspected of links to Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood.
There was no immediate comment from Al Jazeera on the verdicts.