- Middle East/North Africa
The 11 Egyptians arrested by United Arab Emirates authorities on charges of forming an illegal organization were not arrested because of Muslim Brotherhood ties, but because they revealed that late Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman had US$7 billion in Emirati banks and demanded they be returned to Egypt, a former MP from the Freedom and Justice Party told state-run news website Akhbar Masr.
Gamal Heshmat, the former MP, said the UAE was not following the law as no charges have been brought against the 11 detainees. Heshmat said the Brotherhood does not “export” ideas to other countries, as it is often accused of doing.
The arrests attempted to defy the Muslim Brotherhood, Heshmat said, adding that there is no real evidence against the detainees. Heshmat also did not provide any evidence of the allegations against Suleiman. Egyptian authorities did not bring any criminal charges against Suleiman for siphoning money abroad while he was alive.
Early this month, UAE news reports said authorities arrested an Egyptian cell affiliated with the Brotherhood that allegedly sought to draft Egyptians in a plot against the ruling Emirate regime. The Brotherhood has denied these allegations.
Suleiman, who briefly served as vice president under Hosni Mubarak, died in a US hospital in July.