CAIRO, Egypt, AP – Police beat demonstrators and detained members of the Muslim Brotherhood Thursday near a courthouse in downtown Cairo where two hearings for pro-reform figures were scheduled to be held.
Most of the demonstrators Thursday appeared to be from the banned but tolerated Muslim Brotherhood group. Police said they detained about 100 of the group’s members, along with one of its leaders, Essam al-Erian.
Other protesters were from the pro-reform Kefaya movement whose members include secularists and Islamists.
A disciplinary hearing was scheduled Thursday for two judges who spoke to the media about allegations of fraud during last year’s parliamentary elections.
At least one of the justices, Hesham El-Bastawisy, would not be attending because he underwent an emergency heart operation Wednesday. Security banned journalists from being present during the hearing.
Also Thursday, a court was to decide whether to hear the appeal by a candidate in last year’s presidential elections, Ayman Nour, on his conviction for forgery. Nour has been sentenced to five years in prison.
Nour, who recently spent time in a hospital for problems related to diabetes before being returned to his prison cell, said the case was purely political.
During Thursday’s protests, plainclothes police grabbed a middle-aged man by his collar as several police beat him while he repeatedly screamed “I didn’t do anything.”
Another policeman was seen repeatedly slapping a young man in the face.
Security forces rounded up 255 people during a hearing last week in the judges’ case.