The Freedom and Justice party (FJP), the political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood, announced Monday that 40 defendants, including nine women, were referred to military prosecution in Ismailia over charges of “joining a banned group and illegal protesting”.
The Hisham Mubarak Law Centre confirmed the incident and added that four of the female defendants are high school students.
The FJP added that the incident is the first time “for women to be referred to military courts after facing fabricated charges. Eight of the women were arrested in 2013, while the remaining defendant was arrested last February.”
On Saturday, the Egyptian prosecution referred 439 defendants to military court, on charges related to the violence that took place after the dispersal of pro-Mohammed Morsi sit-ins in August 2013.
President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi recently issued a decree which expanded the jurisdiction of military courts to include anyone who attacks the state’s “vital” facilities.
Various human rights organisations condemned the law, including Human Rights Watch, which stated that the law gives military courts “the widest legal authority since the birth of Egypt’s modern republic in 1952”.