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Morsi Sentenced To Death

Ousted Egyptian President Muhammad Morsi (file photo)

A court in Egypt has passed death sentences on ousted President Muhammad Morsi and more than 100 other members of the Muslim Brotherhood for allegedly orchestrating a mass jail break in 2011.

Morsi, sitting in a caged dock, raised his fists in defiance when the judge read his verdict in a Cairo courtroom on May 16.

The death sentence rulings will now be referred to Egypt's top religious authority, the Grand Mufti, for an opinion before any executions can take place.

That opinion is non-binding, and the judge will issue a final decision on June 2.

Human rights groups have accused Egyptian authorities of widespread abuses in a crackdown on Brotherhood supporters as well as secular activists, allegations they deny.

Morsi was Egypt's first freely elected president. He was ousted by the military in July 2013 after days of mass protests sparked by his divisive policies.

Morsi is now serving a 20-year jail sentence on charges linked to the killing of protesters outside a Cairo presidential palace in December 2012.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters