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Ousted Egypt ruling party files complaint with ICC alleging crimes against humanity

The Muslim Brotherhood [party website, JURIST news archive] has filed a complaint in the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] alleging widespread and systematic crimes against humanity have been committed by the Egyptian military since its July coup [JURIST report] removing president Mohamed Morsi [BBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive] from power. The complaint, filed on December 20, purports [Middle East Monitor report] that the military regime committed murder, unlawful imprisonment, torture, persecution, enforced disappearances, and other "inhumane acts" against members of the Muslim Brotherhood and its supporters. Morsi has submitted a declaration [AFP report] to the ICC accepting its jurisdiction over Egypt. However, because Egypt has not ratified the treaty establishing the ICC and Morsi is no longer in office, it is unclear whether the complaint will be pursued [RT report] by the ICC.

In December, 139 Morsi supporters were sentenced to two year prison terms [JURIST report] on a variety of charges including rioting and sabotage during a July 15 protest demanding Morsi's reinstatement. Earlier that month Egyptian state media reported [JURIST report] that ousted Morsi will be tried on charges of espionage and terrorism along with 35 other defendants, many of whom are also former high-level officials and members of the Muslim Brotherhood. Also in December Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] urged [JURIST report] the Egyptian government to reverse its decision to label the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization, calling the label politically driven. In late September an Egyptian court banned [JURIST report] the Brotherhood after having previously banned [JURIST report] several media outlets earlier in the month for their alleged support of the group. The order closing the outlets claimed they had been providing biased news reports favoring the Brotherhood.

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