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UN Chief Alarmed by Egypt Mass Death Sentences

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has expressed alarm over reports an Egyptian court issued death sentences to supporters of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.

In a statement Monday, Mr. Ban said "verdicts that clearly appear not to meet basic fair trial standards, particularly those which impose the death penalty, are likely to undermine prospects for long-term stability.''

The United States said it was "deeply troubled" by the verdict. White House officials said it "defies even the most basic standards of international justice".

The case is linked to deadly riots that erupted in Minya and elsewhere in Egypt after security forces violently disbanded protests held by Brotherhood supporters last August.

The Brotherhood said in a statement that it would continue all peaceful means to end military rule in the country.



Last month, the same court sentenced 529 defendants to death on the same charges in a trial that lasted only two days, drawing international criticism over whether the proceedings were fair.

Egypt's interim authorities have cracked down on the Brotherhood, labeling it a terrorist group and arresting many of its leaders.

Also Monday, judicial officials say a court has banned a pro-democracy movement that helped ignite the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak in 2011.

The court ruled the April 6 youth movement damaged the image of the country.

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