On Tuesday, Egypt sentenced 188 individuals to death after conducting a mass trial in which the defendants were accused of murder simply because they were alleged to be members of the Muslim Brotherhood.
After the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi and his political party The Muslim Brotherhood, protesters took to the streets in opposition to what many perceived to be a military coup. Harsh crackdowns and mass arrests accompanied the demonstrations.
In the case of those involved in Tuesday’s court proceedings, all 188 of the accused were being charged with the murder of 11 police officers who died in an attack on a police station. A defense lawyer said that:
There was no effort to prove that any individual defendant personally killed any of the officers; that more than 100 of the defendants were not allowed to have lawyers; and that scores of defense witnesses were excluded from the courtroom.
In 2013, the latest Egyptian regime led by General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi took power and began a violent crackdown on descent that climaxed with the slaughter of at least 817 protesters in Cairo. Official stories differ, but it’s widely believed that the massacre was perpetrated by the police. Despite such glaring human rights violations the U.S. has continued to support the regime.