CAIRO -- A senior figure in the
As Egyptians prepared to celebrate
Most of the Brotherhood’s leadership has been in jail for months, and Egyptian authorities have been moving to systematically sweep up those who remain at large. The latest high-profile arrest was that of Walid Haddad, the head of external relations for the Brotherhood’s political arm, the Freedom and Justice Party, who was seized in Cairo.
The Brotherhood and all groups affiliated with it have been formally banned, and the government is moving to seize the organization’s assets.
Morsi, who is to be put on trial next month, still believes himself to be the country’s legitimate leader, according to an Eid statement issued by his family and carried on the group’s main website. Egypt’s first democratically elected president, Morsi was overthrown on July 3 by the military, which said it was carrying out the popular will.
The family statement said Morsi “would not retreat from the democratic path that the people chose.”
“The president will not back down or compromise or accept middle-ground solutions, especially after all the martyrs, the wounded, the detainees and the missing persons,” it added.
Nearly 1,000 Morsi supporters were killed in a mid-August crackdown on protest camps set up by those demanding his reinstatement, and about 2,000 members of the Brotherhood’s rank and file are in jail. Authorities have managed to contain most
In another sign of tensions between the interim government and Islamists, Egypt announced it was closing the border with the Gaza Strip for five days surrounding the holiday. Gaza is the redoubt of
Egyptian police and soldiers for the past two months have been carrying out a sustained offensive in the Sinai, with casualties reported almost daily.