Egypt’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement tackling the European Commission’s criticism of its recent trial, which sentenced 75 protesters from 2013 to death, on charges of acting for the Muslim Brotherhood.
The statement, which aims to “answer some diplomat’s questions about Egypt’s position” over the criticism, rejects the European Commission’s “pattern of bias, and absolute judgments that contradict with the principles of respecting the law and judiciary system”.
“Egyptian institutions intend to fully exercise their power as specified by the constitution and the law,” the statement maintains.
“Moreover, Egypt will continue to abide by the principle of non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs as specified by the UN charter, which should be respected by all members by the international community, including the European Commission.”
In 2013, protesters held a sit-in at Raba’a Square in Cairo, following an announcement that the Egyptian military would topple President Mohamed Morsi, whose Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated party was unpopular in its first term.
The protesters were dispersed by force, which initiated a wide debate on whether it was the correct course of action. The dispersal left around 632 dead and 4,000 injured.
On Sunday, 75 of the protesters were sentenced to death for ties to the now-outlawed Islamist group, including senior leaders of the organization.
This prompted a response by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and later the EU, who stated that “the circumstances under which the mass trial took place [prompt] doubts over whether the legal procedures were respected, especially the right of the accused to a fair trial.”