EGYPT: COURT GIVES DEATH SENTENCE TO 'JEWISH' ISLAMISTS
June 1, 2014: An Egyptian court that sentenced to death 37Â Islamists and handed life terms to 492 others defended its verdictÂ on Sunday (June 1st),Â saying the men were "demons" who followed Jewish scripture.
The court in the central city of Minya had triggered international outrageÂ earlier this year for sentencing to death hundreds of alleged supporters ofÂ ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in two separate mass trials which onlyÂ lasted minutes.
In one trial in March, 529 were sentenced to death for the killing of aÂ police officer but the court later upheld the sentencing against only 37 of them, while the rest were jailed for life.
In a statementÂ SundayÂ to justify its decision, the court said: "The accusedÂ came out of the depths of hell... to plunder Egypt's wealth, terrorize itsÂ people and they killed the deputy commissioner."
It described the men as "enemies of the nation" who used mosques to promoteÂ the teachings of "their holy book, the Talmud," the central scripture ofÂ Judaism.
The military toppled Morsi in July last year, following mass protestsÂ against his year in power, and security forces launched a crackdown on his supporters, killing hundreds and arresting thousands more.
In April, the same court in Minya handed the death penalty to 683 people itÂ said were supporters of Morsi, accusing them of murder and the attempted murderÂ of policemen.
Judges are due to confirm the 683 death sentences onÂ June 21. (Sources: israelnationalnews.com, 06/01/2014)