20 Aug 2013

Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader Badie arrested

Mohammed Badie, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, is arrested in Cairo as pro-Morsi supporters claim the death toll in Egypt’s violence has reached 1,400.

The private ONTV network broadcast footage (above) of the man the network said was Badie, sat on a sofa, with an armed guard at his side. State television and government officials also reported the capture.

Egypt’s government ordered Badie’s arrest in July, and he had been in hiding ever since.

Mr Badie, who will go on trial alongside his deputy Khairat el-Shater later this month for their alleged role in the killing of eight protesters in June, was said to have been detained in the eastern Cairo district of Nasr City.

It was in Nasr City where supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi held a six-week sit in protest that was broken up by police and the military sparking a week of bloody violence.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague has called the conflict the “most important event of the 21st century”.

Mr Morsi has been held in an undisclosed location since he was removed from power. On Monday, prosecutors ordered his detention for 15 days in connection with allegations that he conspired to kill and torture protesters during mass demonstrations by the opposition outside his presidential palace in December 2012.


Mr Badie’s arrest follows the deaths of 25 off-duty police officers on Monday, who were killed in an attack on two minibuses in the turbulent Sinai peninsula.

On Monday night the dead men were buried with full military honours, and interim President Adly Mansour declared a nationwide state of mourning to mark their deaths.

These deaths followed those of 36 detainees on Sunday. Conflicting reports have surrounded these deaths, with the government saying the men suffocated on tear gas after rioting in a prison convoy, but other sources suggesting they were killed in the grounds of a prison in northern Egypt.

Pro-Morsi supporters claim that around 1,400 people have been killed in the violence.

Mubarak release

It was also revealed on Monday that Hosni Mubarak, the dictator overthrown in the Arab Spring, could be released from custody this week.

His release would be justified by Egypt’s rule on how long someone can be imprisoned whilst awaiting a final verdict.

He is currently being retried for failing to stop the killing of around 900 protesters in Egypt’s Arab Spring in 2011 – he had previously been sentenced to life in jail but this was overturned on appeal.