When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Already a subscriber? Log in .

You've reached your limit of one free article.

Get unlimited access to Worldcrunch

You can cancel anytime .


Exclusive International news coverage

Ad-free experience NEW

Weekly digital Magazine NEW

9 daily & weekly Newsletters

Access to Worldcrunch archives

Free trial

30-days free access, then $2.90
per month.

Annual Access BEST VALUE

$19.90 per year, save $14.90 compared to monthly billing.save $14.90.

Subscribe to Worldcrunch

Why A Morsi Execution Could Risk Civil War In Egypt

Mohamed Morsi during his trial in Cairo on March 26, 2015
Mohamed Morsi during his trial in Cairo on March 26, 2015
Omar Said

CAIRO — When the Egyptian regime carried out the hanging of six defendants last week in the Arab Sharkas case, it was sending a clear message to former President Mohamed Morsi a day after a Cairo court sentenced the former leader and another 106 people to death. Such is the interpretation of events in the capital by attorney Ahmed Helmy, who represented some of the Arab Sharkas defendants.

The six men were accused members of the militant group formerly known as Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, and had been sentenced to death last October. As for Morsi and the other defendants, the court handed them a death sentence on charges of prison break.

But execution in Morsi"s case would have heavy political and security implications. "A decision of the sort is not in the best interest of the country's security, or the daily life of citizens," says Abdel Latif al-Bedeiny, former deputy interior minister. "It will only open the door to more violence, which will worsen the conflict between both parties."

Commenting on one of the major flaws commonly cited in the case, he adds, "I do not want to comment on a judicial verdict, but having deceased Palestinians among those convicted raises big question marks."

Among the Palestinians convicted alongside Morsi are Hassan Salama, a detainee in Israeli prisons since 1996; Tayssir Abou Sneema, who was killed by Israeli forces in 2009; Hossam al-Sanei, who was killed in 2008; and Raed al-Attar, founder of the Qassam Brigades, also killed by Israel in the last attack in Gaza.

Ahmed Ban, a researcher on Islamic movements, agrees. "I cannot imagine a sane authority would carry out these verdicts," he says. "Taking that step would open the door for a civil war."

Ban, a former member of the Muslim Brotherhood, adds, "Carrying out these verdicts means that we have reached the final stage of the confrontation between the Brotherhood and the state, which goes against the history of this conflict. The state has always managed to maintain a balance between confrontation and political settlement with the group. Even if the confrontation seems to now be at its peak, there is room for political settlement."

But Bedeiny blames the escalation in this verdict on the failure of both the Brotherhood and the state to find grounds for reconciliation, especially in the absence of deft political mediation.

In making this claim, Bedeiny also unintentionally points to the verdict's politicization and the judiciary behind it.

"There is an entity trying to embarrass the state and the executive authority," Ban says, in an elusive reference to the judiciary and the security apparatus. "I do not understand how an individual is acquitted from charges of espionage and then sentenced to death because he escaped from prison during a revolution. There seems to be an entity trying to pressure the state to gain or maintain power."

Morsi was sentenced to death on charges of prison escape. He was never sentenced in the espionage case.

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

food / travel

When Racism Poisons Italy's Culinary Scene

This is the case of chef Mareme Cisse, a black woman, who was called a slur after a couple found out that she was the one who would be preparing their meal.

Photo of Mareme Cisse cooking

Mareme Cisse in the kitchen of Ginger People&Food

Caterina Suffici


TURIN — Guess who's not coming to dinner. It seems like a scene from the American Deep South during the decades of segregation. But this happened in Italy, in this summer of 2023.

Two Italians, in their sixties, got up from the restaurant table and left (without saying goodbye, as the owner points out), when they declared that they didn't want to eat in a restaurant where the chef was what they called: an 'n-word.'

Racists, poor things. And ignorant, in the sense of not knowing basic facts. They don't realize that we are all made of mixtures, come from different racial and ethnic backgrounds. And that food, of course, are blends of different ingredients and recipes.

The restaurant is called Ginger People&Food, and these visitors from out of town probably didn't understand that either.

Keep reading...Show less

The latest