Egypt’s ousted President Mohamed Morsi will stand trial for “incitement to murder” along with 14 other members of the Muslim Brotherhood political party.
Morsi was ousted by protesters and the Egyptian military on July 3 and has been detained ever since, though his location is not known at this time.
The move underscores another massive power shift for the Middle Eastern nation as its new rulers work to crack down on the Islamists who rose to power after Hosni Mubarak’s downfall, reports Reuters.
Along with referring Morsi to trial, the new government also named a new constituent assembly almost completely devoid of Islamists.
The group was given 60 days to review amendments to Egypt’s constitution. The amendments would erase Islamic articles brought in late last year by the Brotherhood and other conservative Islamic parties.
Al Jazeera notes that the charges of murder against Mohamed Morsi stem from violence last December outside the presidential palace. Protesters took to the streets then after Morsi expanded his powers.
While he later removed the declarations to expand his powers, the damage had been done. At least seven people were killed in clashes that month. More than that have died since Morsi was overthrown almost two months ago.
Authorities have mounted a massive crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood and its supporters. Along with arresting most of the party’s top leaders, the military has also killed several hundred pro-Morsi supporters who engaged in sit-ins following the ouster. About 100 members of Egypt’s security forces have also been killed in the past few weeks.
in relation to the charges against Morsi, Egypt’s state news agency explained the former president and 14 Muslim Brotherhood members were charged by a state prosecutor with “committing acts of violence, and inciting killing and thuggery.” Morsi is also under investigation for how he escaped from jail in the 2011 uprising against Mubarak.
It is likely Morsi will also stand trial for charges related to the escape, including murder and conspiring with Hamas.