Egypt court bans all Muslim Brotherhood activities

Egypt court bans all Muslim Brotherhood activities
Members of the Muslim Brotherhood and supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi shout slogans against the military and interior ministry in front the El-Thadiya presidential palace in Cairo September 20, 2013.

CAIRO - An Egyptian court on Monday banned the Muslim Brotherhood from carrying out any activities in the country and ordered the seizure of the group's funds, widening a campaign to debilitate the Islamist movement of deposed President Mohamed Mursi.

"The court bans the activities of the Muslim Brotherhood organisation and its non-governmental organisation and all the activities that it participates in and any organisation derived from it," said the presiding judge Mohammed al-Sayed.

The court ordered the government to seize the Brotherhood's funds and administer its frozen assets.

The army-backed government is waging the toughest crackdown in decades on the Islamist group, which says it has a million members. Security forces killed hundreds of its supporters and rounded up thousands more since Mursi was deposed by the army on July 3 after mass protests against his rule.

The Brotherhood won parliamentary and presidential elections after veteran autocrat Hosni Mubarak was overthrown in 2011.

Army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi's toppling of Mursi triggered a political crisis in the Arab world's most populous state, with the Brotherhood insisting that a military coup robbed them of power.

The court decision is likely to drive more Brotherhood members underground and it may encourage young Islamists to take up arms against the state.

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