Egyptian authorities have detained the senior Muslim Brotherhood leader Essam El-Erian, according to the country’s interior ministry. It is the latest arrest in a crackdown against the Islamist movement that the ruling military regime ousted from power.
Erian, the deputy leader of the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice party, was taken into custody from a residence in New Cairo where he had been in hiding, an official said.
“Yes, he’s been arrested and details will soon be released,” the official said.
The state news agency Mena said Erian was arrested in New Cairo but gave no further details.
Local media circulated a photo of what they described as the moment he was arrested, showing a smiling Erian standing next to a bed with two packed duffle bags.
The Muslim Brotherhood Group was banned and many of its leaders have been detained and charged with inciting violence since the army, prompted by mass protests, deposed the Islamist President Mohamed Morsi on 3 July.
At least 1,000 people, including security forces, died in the violence that followed Morsi’s ouster. Hundreds of his supporters were killed after police stormed two protest camps calling for Morsi’s reinstatement on 14 August.
An Egyptian court in September banned the Muslim Brotherhood and seized its funds in a bid to crush the movement, which the government accuses of inciting violence and terrorism.
Source : theguardian