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Ten Islamists detained in Alexandria

CAIRO: Egyptian security forces detained 10 members of the opposition Muslim Brotherhood in the northern city of Alexandria, the Islamist movement s spokesman told AFP Saturday. Ten members of the Brotherhood were arrested Friday in Alexandria, some of them as they were eating in a restaurant, Essam Al-Aryan said. He added that among those rounded …


CAIRO: Egyptian security forces detained 10 members of the opposition Muslim Brotherhood in the northern city of Alexandria, the Islamist movement s spokesman told AFP Saturday. Ten members of the Brotherhood were arrested Friday in Alexandria, some of them as they were eating in a restaurant, Essam Al-Aryan said. He added that among those rounded up was Helmi Al-Gazzar, one of the movement s leaders. According to the movement s Web site, another local official, Hassan Al-Brens, was also detained. These arrests are the result of an escalation by the Egyptian government, which is cracking down on the Muslim Brothers in response to the movement s activities in parliament, said a statement posted on the site. The Brotherhood s supreme guide, Mohammed Mahdi Akef, said the detainees had been preparing to attend a conference against the Emergency Law, in place since 1981. In a written statement, Akef accused the security forces of entering the clinic of oncologist Ahmad Salim Fouad and confiscating computers and patients medical records. This poses a great danger to these patients who receive treatment for cancer, details of which are found on the computers, he said. The Islamist movement is officially banned in Egypt but fielded candidates as independents in last year s parliamentary polls and won 88 of the 454 seats in the People s Assembly. It is by far the largest opposition force and has adopted an aggressive stance of challenging the government’s policies during parliamentary sessions. Egyptian security services briefly prevented the publication of the movement s mouthpiece a month ago and arrested several Muslim Brothers, including Rashad Bayyumi. The brotherhood official criticized Gamal Mubarak, President Hosni Mubarak s son and deputy secretary general of the ruling NDP, in an article run by the newspaper. AFP

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