CAIRO: Ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi is to stand trial in a criminal court for “incitement to murder,” state television reported on Sunday (Monday in Manila) without giving a date for the trial.
It said he will stand trial along with 14 other suspects in his Muslim brotherhood movement on charges of “incitement to murder and violence” in December 2012 when deadly clashes broke out between his supporters and opponents outside the presidential palace.
Already accused of crimes related to his 2011 escape from prison, Morsi has been held at a secret location since his ouster by the army on July 3.
The co-defendants in the trial include senior brotherhood figures Mohamed al-Beltagi and leaders such as Essam el-Erian, deputy head of the Freedom and Justice Party, the brotherhood political wing.
In December, thousands of demonstrators gathered in front of the presidential palace in Cairo to protest against a presidential decree that expanded Morsi’s powers and an Islamist-drafted constitution.
An Egyptian court in July ordered Morsi’s detention for questioning over alleged ties with Palestinian militants in prison breaks and attacks on police.
Egypt has pressed a fierce campaign against the brotherhood since the former president’s ouster and effectively decapitated the Islamist group by arresting its supreme guide Mohamed Badie in August.
Authorities have also arrested more than 2,000 brotherhood figures since Morsi’s ouster.
Brotherhood defendants, including Badie, were because of appear in court on August 25 but kept away for what authorities said were security reasons. A new hearing is to take place on October 29.
Badie and his deputies Khairat al-Shater and Rashad al-Bayoumi face charges related to the deaths of protesters who stormed the brotherhood’s Cairo headquarters on June 30.
Three other brotherhood members are standing trial with the leaders, accused of carrying out the murders at the end of June.
Egypt’s interim President Adly Mansour announced a 50-member panel Sunday to draw up a revised constitution but without the inclusion of the Muslim brotherhood, which has declined to take part.
A top African Union official said that the Muslim brotherhood must join the political roadmap proposed by Egypt’s new authorities, in a bid to end the violence rocking the country.
Diletta Mohamed Diletta, former premier of Djibouti and member of an African Union panel currently in Egypt to assess the situation in the country, said it was “important and necessary” that the Brotherhood joins the nation’s political process.