The Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the Muslim Brotherhood’s statement of sympathy for Adel Habara, who was executed on 12 December.
According to the ministry, Habara is a member of Islamic State. He was accused of two massacres in Rafah in 2012 and 2013. The ministry considered the Brotherhood’s defence of Habara a reflection of its support for terrorism.
Habara was executed on Thursday at dawn, after being convicted of several crimes, including involvement in the killing of 25 police conscripts in 2013, known as the “second Rafah massacre” case.
“The Brotherhood portrayed a terrorist as an innocent victim, who was not subject to a fair trial, ignoring the different judiciary steps applied, such as appeals, over the course of three years,” the ministry said.
The Brotherhood’s local branch condemned the execution of Habara in a statement issued on Thursday on behalf of the group’s media spokesperson Hassan Saleh.
“The military coup regime executed the young Adel Habara—may peace be upon him—thus adding a new crime to its ongoing violations of human rights and justice,” the Brotherhood’s statement read.
It added: “We stress upon our strong rejection of military trials and random verdicts issued without guarantees of a fair trial and the right of the defendant to defend himself, which did not happen.”
Moreover, the Brotherhood said “unjust random verdicts have been issued against innocents, including the detained democratically elected president,” in reference to ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.
But the Brotherhood’s sympathy for Habara contradicts its previous stance from when he was arrested. On 1 September 2013, the Brotherhood issued a statement in which it used Habara’s arrest as a justification to clear their name from involvement in the “Rafah massacre”.
“Al-Ahram published a news story stating that security forces arrested Habara, a leader in the Al-Qaeda group in Sinai, according to the Interior Ministry. The story reported that the suspect provided detailed information on the massacre,” read the story published on Ikhwan Online.
The statement continued: “Whether the ministry’s story is correct or not, this remains the proof of innocence for the Brotherhood from the accusation of murdering the 25 police conscripts, for which state-supporting media rushed to accuse the group.”
But, in October 2014, during Habara’s trial, the same website covered the court’s verdict sentencing Habara and others to death penalties, stating that “the prosecution fabricated terrorist charges against the defendants, related to the killing of the police officers and espionage with Al-Qaeda.”
Habara was given permission to speak more than once in court sessions. In 2014, he accused Egyptian intelligence services of killing the 25 police conscripts, according to video coverage by several news outlets.
In another session, Habara yelled at the judge from his cell calling him “an enemy of God”, which the judge noted during the session, in a video broadcast by Al-Youm Al-Sabea in August 2014.
In a session in December 2015, published by Masrawy website, Habara clearly stated that he once reached a deal with the police to drop charges against him in exchange for him promising that police officers would not be targeted in attacks.
Habara was convicted in the killing of a police officer in Sharqeya.
Habara is the nickname of Adel Mohamed Ibrahim who was buried in his hometown Sharqeya.