UAE to try 94 over plot to seize power
January 28, 2013
ABU DHABI — The United Arab Emirates is to put on trial 94 people accused of plotting against the Gulf state, Attorney General Salem Kobaish announced Sunday.
He said the accused, whose arrests were announced in July, will go on trial for “having created and led a movement aimed at opposing the basic foundations on which the state’s political system is built and at seizing power.”
The group had formed a “secret organization” which was in contact with individuals and organizations “abroad”, including the Muslim Brotherhood, Kobaish said in a statement, quoted by the official news agency WAM.
Kobaish said the suspects had publicly called for adherence to the Islamic religion when in fact they were secretly plotting to take over the oil-producing country
“They had plotted for that discreetly at secret meetings they held in their homes, farms and other places where they tried to conceal and hide what they were plotting from the concerned authorities.”
The attorney general said they had also created or invested in real estate companies to finance their organization, but he did not specify when their trial will begin.
Al-Khaleej newspaper said in September that the detained suspects had confessed to setting up a secret organization with an armed wing with the aim of seizing power and establishing an Islamist state in the UAE.
Kobaish said the suspects used social media and the Internet with the aim of creating a public opinion hostile to the UAE government and its leadership.
“They also communicated with the international Muslim Brotherhood organization and other similar organizations outside the country, asked them for help, expertise and financial support to serve their undeclared goal of seizing power,” Kobaish’s statement said.
On Jan. 9, WAM reported that UAE prosecutors had begun questioning women allegedly linked to the group.
Dubai police chief Gen. Dahi Khalfan has accused the Muslim Brotherhood — which came to power after the uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia — of plotting against Gulf monarchies. He charged the activists detained since last year were linked to the group.
This month, local media announced that UAE authorities had arrested 11 Egyptian residents suspected of links to the Brotherhood.
The case has sparked a sharp deterioration of relations between Abu Dhabi and Cairo, already under strain since Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsi’s election as Egyptian president last June.
UAE has rejected a request from Egypt for the release of its nationals.