Skip to main content

Senior Muslim Brotherhood leader Essam el-Erian arrested in Egypt

From Salma Abdelaziz, CNN
October 30, 2013 -- Updated 1029 GMT (1829 HKT)
Essam el-Erian (left), and Muslim Brotherhood member Mohamed El-Beltagy talk during a parliament session in Cairo.
Essam el-Erian (left), and Muslim Brotherhood member Mohamed El-Beltagy talk during a parliament session in Cairo.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Essam el-Erian is detained by security forces in a suburb of Cairo
  • He is the vice chairman of the Muslim Brotherhood's political wing
  • Authorities have arrested large numbers of the Islamist movement's leaders
  • El-Erian was one of the most senior Brotherhood officials still at large

(CNN) -- Egyptian security forces arrested a senior leader of the Muslim Brotherhood early Wednesday, the interior ministry said, the latest move in an extended crackdown on the Islamist movement.

Essam el-Erian, the vice chairman of the group's political wing -- the Freedom and Justice Party -- was found in a Cairo suburb and was subsequently arrested and booked, the ministry said in a statement.

Before his arrest, he was one of the most senior Muslim Brotherhood leaders still at large.

The military and police have detained large numbers of Brotherhood officials and supporters since the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsy in July. A court banned the movement in September.

Muslim Brotherhood activities banned
Muslim Brotherhood forced underground

Egypt's general prosecutor had issued an arrest warrant for el-Erian, the former leader of the majority party in Egypt's upper house of Parliament, accusing him and other party members of "inciting violence" and "aiding criminal acts," the interior ministry said.

The military's overthrow of the democratically elected Morsy, amid widespread demonstrations calling for his resignation, has plunged Egypt deeper into turmoil.

READ: Mohamed Morsy gets trial date as Egypt turmoil continues

Hundreds of people have been killed in clashes between security forces and supporters of Morsy and the Brotherhood, many of them when the military used force to clear two pro-Morsy sit-in sites in Cairo in August.

The U.S. government said earlier this month that it was suspending hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to the Egyptian military over the bloody crackdown on the Brotherhood.

READ: Report: Egypt court bans Brotherhood activities

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
This looks like a ghost ship, but it's actually the site of a tense international standoff between the Philippines and China.
July 26, 2014 -- Updated 1555 GMT (2355 HKT)
The reported firing of artillery from Russian territory is a sign Vladimir Putin has escalated the Ukraine battle, says CNN's military analyst Rick Francona.
July 27, 2014 -- Updated 0846 GMT (1646 HKT)
The young boy stops, stares, throws ammunition casings at the reporter's feet without a word.
July 27, 2014 -- Updated 1237 GMT (2037 HKT)
A picture taken on June 28, 2014 shows a member of Doctors Without Borders (MSF) putting on protective gear at the isolation ward of the Donka Hospital in Conakry, where people infected with the Ebola virus are being treated. The World Health Organization has warned that Ebola could spread beyond hard-hit Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone to neighbouring nations, but insisted that travel bans were not the answer.
The worst ebola outbreak in history spreads out of control in West Africa. CNN's Michael Holmes reports.
July 26, 2014 -- Updated 0048 GMT (0848 HKT)
Sure, Fido is a brown Lab. But inside, he may also be a little green.
July 24, 2014 -- Updated 2006 GMT (0406 HKT)
ITN's Dan Rivers reports from the hospital where those injured by an attack in Gaza were being treated.
July 28, 2014 -- Updated 1303 GMT (2103 HKT)
Photograph of an undisclosed location by Patrycja Makowska
Patrycja Makowska likes to give enigmatic names to the extraordinarily beautiful photographs she shoots of crumbling palaces.
July 23, 2014 -- Updated 0804 GMT (1604 HKT)
When the Costa Concordia and its salvage convoy finally depart Giglio, the residents will breathe a sigh of relief -- and shed a tear.
July 25, 2014 -- Updated 1808 GMT (0208 HKT)
Flight attendants are wearing black ribbons to show solidarity with fallen colleagues in "a tribute to those who never made it home."
CNN joins the fight to end modern-day slavery by shining a spotlight on its horrors and highlighting success stories.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT