News / Middle East

Kerry 'Concerned' about Egypt's Crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood

FILE - Cairo University students who support the Muslim Brotherhood and ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi shout slogans against the military and Interior Ministry in front of riot police at the main gate of the university, Cairo, Nov. 24, 2013.
FILE - Cairo University students who support the Muslim Brotherhood and ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi shout slogans against the military and Interior Ministry in front of riot police at the main gate of the university, Cairo, Nov. 24, 2013.
TEXT SIZE - +
VOA News
The United States' top diplomat is expressing renewed concern at the Egyptian military-backed government's expanded crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood.

Police rounded up dozens of Brotherhood members Thursday after the government declared the group a terrorist organization and announced stiff new restrictions on those who support it.

The interim government has blamed the Islamist group for a wave of violence, including Tuesday's car bombing at a police headquarters in the Nile delta town of Mansoura that killed 15 people.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry condemned that attack, as well as a Thursday bus bombing in Cairo that wounded five people. However, he also told his Egyptian counterpart Nabil Fahmy in a phone call that he is concerned about the group being designated as a terrorist organization and the recent detentions and arrests.

The State Department said Kerry "underscored the need for an inclusive political process across the political spectrum that respects the fundamental human rights of all Egyptians in order to achieve political stability and democratic change."

The Brotherhood denies involvement in the attacks, some of which have been claimed by Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, a hardline Islamist group. It says it is committed to peacefully restoring Islamist President Mohamed Morsi, who was ousted by the military following mass protests in July.

Kerry has in recent months said the ouster of Morsi, Egypt's first democratically elected president, was necessary to restore democracy. However, he has also criticized the widening campaign against the Brotherhood, the country's largest and most organized political group.

Over 1,000 people, mainly Islamist supports of Morsi, have been killed in the crackdown. Thousands more members of the Brotherhood, including most of its top leaders, leaders have been arrested.

On Thursday, the Egyptian Interior Ministry said a five year prison sentence will be given to anyone who joins a Muslim Brotherhood march, promotes the group verbally or in writing, or is caught with its publications or recordings.

The moves seem to have done little to stop the near-daily protests calling for Morsi's reinstatement. Late Thursday, Egyptian officials said one person was killed in the Nasr City district of Cairo during clashes between supporters and opponents of Morsi.

Meanwhile, state media say authorities arrested 16 Brotherhood activists Thursday in the Nile delta province of Sharkiya on suspicion of promoting the group's ideology, distributing leaflets, and inciting violence against the army and police.

At least 18 others were arrested or detained across the country for belonging to the group.

The unrest comes ahead of a referendum next month on a new constitution that is billed by the military as part of a democratic transition ahead of elections for a new parliament and president.

You May Like

Analysts Warn of Regional Proxy Conflict in Afghanistan

Analysts warn if Kabul’s neighbors do not start to cooperate, competing desires for influence could deteriorate into a bloody proxy war in the country More

Saudi Intelligence Chief Replaced

Bandar bin Sultan came under criticism for supporting al Qaida, prompting King Abdallah to wrest Syria operations away from him in February, handing them to Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef More

Poetry Magazine editor Don Share talks what makes a good poem with VOA's David Byrd

What makes a good poem? And is poetry as viable an art form as it once was? To find out, VOA's David Byrd spoke to Don Share, the editor of Poetry Magazine. More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid