Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood condemned the arrest of their leader Mohamed Badie early Tuesday, while the group's opponents hailed the move.
In the early hours of Tuesday, Egyptian authorities announced Badie's arrest in an apartment near Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya Square, where a six-week-old sit-in by supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi was violently dispersed by security forces last week.
Badie was later moved under heavy guard to Cairo's maximum-security Al-Aqrab Prison.
"The prison houses all the leaders of the Brotherhood and Islamist groups arrested following Morsi's July 3 ouster," a security source told Anadolu Agency.
The Muslim Brotherhood leader faces charges of incitement to violence and murder in connection with clashes outside the group's Cairo headquarters earlier this year in which nine people were killed.
According to a statement issued by the Brotherhood, Badie's arrest is "score-settling with the Muslim Brotherhood and a new form of escalation by the coup leaders against the group."
It added: "Badie is only one member of the group; his arrest will not hinder the Brotherhood from confronting the coup."
Brotherhood lawyer Mustafa Azzab dismissed the charges against Badie as they were politically motivated.
"These accusations against Brotherhood leaders, which were issued suddenly after the coup, force us to question the neutrality of judicial bodies," he told Anadolu Agency.
Ali Kamal, another Brotherhood lawyer, also questioned the charges leveled against Brotherhood leaders.
"It's well known that all charges against Brotherhood leaders and the [pro-democracy] National Alliance for the Defense of Legitimacy are fabricated; they have not been accompanied by any evidence and have no legal basis," Kamal told AA.
Opponents to the Islamist group, meanwhile, welcomed Badie's arrest.
Mohamed Abdel-Aziz, a co-founder of the Tamarod movement, which led calls for the anti-Morsi June 30 protests that ultimately led to Morsi's overthrow, declared via Twitter that Badie's arrest was "an important step for the revolution, the fight against terrorism, and the disbanding of the terrorist group."
He also called for the dissolution of the Muslim Brotherhood, confiscation of its funds and designating the group a "terrorist" organization.
Also via Twitter, political activist Hazem Abdel-Azim alleged a connection between the Brotherhood and a Monday attack in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula that left 25 policemen dead, describing the arrest as "a gift to the mothers of the martyrs of Rafah."
"This isn't gloating, but retribution; investigations will determine his involvement in the recent massacres," Abdel-Azim claimed.
Mohamed Abu Hamed, a former liberal lawmaker, likewise expressed satisfaction over Badie's arrest.
"Terrorist Mohamed Badie, leader of the terrorist Brotherhood, was arrested," he said, adding "Wait for the revenge of the Egyptian people."
AAGüncelleme Tarihi: 20 Ağustos 2013, 11:56