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Egypt court sentences two Morsi supporters to death

An Egyptian court on Saturday sentenced two supporters of deposed president Mohammed Morsi [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] to death for murder. The charges stem from violence in Alexandria just after Morsi was ousted. Specifically, the two were convicted of killing Morsi opponents by throwing them off a building. Two of the youths suffered serious injuries while one was pronounced dead at the hospital. The sentences are part of a harsh crackdown on Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood [JURIST news archive] supporters following the president's removal in a military coup last July. In addition to these death sentences, another Egyptian court sentenced 529 Morsi supporters to death [JURIST report] earlier this week, despite heavy opposition from international human rights groups.

Political conflict in Egypt has been ongoing since the 2011 revolution [JURIST backgrounder] that ousted former president Hosni Mubarak from power. Much of that conflict has occurred recently between supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood and the former government of Morsi, and supporters of the new government in place since his ouster in July, especially since the organization's formal ban [JURIST reports] in September. On March 18, an Egyptian court sentenced [JURIST report] four police officers for their role in the deaths of 37 Islamists. Opponents have criticized the light sentences handed down to the officers. A day earlier, an Egyptian prosecutor referred [JURIST report] Morsi's youngest son, Abdullah Morsi, to trial on allegations of drug use and possession. In February, the Cairo Criminal Court convicted [JURIST report] 26 people of forming a terrorist group with intent to attack the Suez Canal.

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