|Former Egyptian president M. Morsi|
The head of the Council of Europe has written to Egypt's Grand Mufti asking him not to approve hundreds of death sentences hanging over jailed dissidents - including former president, Mohamed Morsi.
Thorbjorn Jagland wrote to Professor Shawki Abdel-Karim Allam on Thursday in the hope that capital punishment will not be applied to Morsi and over 100 Muslim Brotherhood activists.
Egyptian law requires death penalties to be referred to the Grand Mufti, the highest religious official in the country.
"The Council of Europe is firmly opposed to the death penalty as a cruel and inhumane punishment which denies human dignity and integrity and can never be undone," Jagland wrote in the letter.
Last year, hundreds of Egyptians were sentenced to death but rulings on only a few dozen were actually upheld, the rest converted into jail sentences of 25 years.
Morsi and 12 codefendants were sentenced to 20 years in prison last month for allegedly mobilizing supporters to "intimidate, detain and torture" dozens of anti-Morsi protesters during clashes outside eastern Cairo's Ittihadiya presidential palace in December 2012.
The former president currently faces multiple criminal trials on charges that include espionage and "insulting the judiciary" -- charges he says are politically motivated.
Source: World Bulletin, May 29, 2015
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