Twenty-five men received jail sentences including life in prison on charges of planning terrorist attacks in Egypt and establishing a terror cell.
The defendants, who belong to the ultra-conservative Gamaa Jihadiyah group, were arrested in October 2012 and charged with establishing a terrorist cell in Cairo’s Nasr City district with the aim of plotting terror attacks throughout the country.
Twelve of the defendants received life in prison, while the others received jail terms ranging from 15 to seven years. One person was acquitted.
After the verdicts were announced in the Cairo court on Wednesday, the defendants chanted “Allah Akbar” while raising photos of Osama Bin Laden and banners with pro-Al-Qaeda slogans. They also shouted their support for Ayman El-Zawahary, the Egyptian-born current leader of Al-Qaeda, who they called “the nation’s wisest man”.
The Nasr City cell was the first major terrorist cell related to Al-Qaeda that was arrested in Egypt after the 2011 uprising.
Terrorist attacks and cells have spiked in Egypt since the ouster of president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.
Police have uncovered several cells nationwide that they say are connected to militant groups like Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis.
Source : Ahram online