CAIRO (AP) — The spokesman of the Egyptian Cabinet said late Saturday afternoon that the local authorities are considering disbanding the Muslim Brotherhood group.
Spokesman Sherif Shawki said Egyptian Prime Minister Hazem el-Beblawi assigned Ministry of Social Solidarity to study the legal possibilities of dissolving the group. He didn’t elaborate.
Earlier Saturday, the Muslim Brotherhood announced that a son of its spiritual leader was killed during fierce clashes in downtown Cairo, as hundreds of Islamists supporters of the country’s ousted president remained barricaded inside a mosque.
The group’s political arm, the Freedom and Justice party, said on its official website that Mohammed Badie’s son Ammar, 38, was killed Friday. That’s when the Muslim Brotherhood took to the streets in a “Day of Rage” — ignited by anger at security forces over clearing two sit-in camps protesting the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi, leaving hundreds dead.
Egypt’s Health Ministry said Saturday that 173 people were killed in street violence in Cairo and around the country that accompanied Friday’s demonstrations. Most deaths took place in central Cairo’s Ramses square, which was a focal point of protests.
Egypt’s Interior Ministry said in a statement that a total of 1,004 Brotherhood members were detained in raids across the country and that weapons, bombs and ammunition were confiscated with the detainees.
The Muslim Brotherhood-led anti-military coalition has called for a week of protests, further escalating unrest in the country. The coalition says that they won’t back down until it topples the government installed by the military — which overthrow Morsi on July 3.
Meanwhile, hundreds remained inside the al-Fatah mosque in Cairo on Saturday morning after barricading themselves inside overnight. They shoved furniture against the doors to stop police from breaking their way in.
The Muslim Brotherhood group, founded in 1928, came to power a year ago when its leader Mohammed Morsi was elected in the country’s first free presidential elections. The election came after the overthrow of longtime autocratic president Hosni Mubarak.
Morsi was overthrown in a popularly backed military coup July 3.
The Brotherhood rocketed to power after decades of being a banned group in Egypt. While sometimes tolerated, its leaders often faced long bouts of imprisonment.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.