Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi has cancelled a visit to attend the African Union Summit in South Africa on Thursday. This decision came after a lawyer’s association in the country filed an official legal request for his arrest..
President Sisi was to arrive Friday in Johannesburg to lead his country's delegation in the African summit titled "Enabling African Women," which will take place on June 14 and 15.
"We believe Al-Sisi committed war crimes and crimes against humanity for the horrendous killings that resulted from the (2013) coup in Egypt," attorney Yousha Tayoub, a member of the South African Muslim Lawyers Association, told to Anadolu Agency.
A well-informed African diplomatic source told Anadolu Agency that Al-Sisi would not participate. The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, added that Egypt had officially informed the host country that Al-Sisi would not participate in the summit, and that PM Ibrahim Mehleb will lead the Egyptian delegation instead.
President Al-Sisi led the military coup then military commander, against President Mohamed Morsi in 2013, Egypt's first freely elected president and a Muslim Brotherhood leader.
At the time, the South African government had vocally criticized Morsi's ouster and the subsequent crackdown on political dissent waged by Egypt's army-backed government.
As a result, over 1,400 people have been reportedly killed, as well as 22,000 who have been detained. Additionally, there have been hundreds sentenced to death in mass trials.
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