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                                        Volume. 11937

UAE intensifies crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood supporters
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c_330_235_16777215_0___images_stories_edim_01_UAE99.jpgA UAE court on Monday jailed a Qatari and two Emiratis up to seven years for raising funds in support of a Muslim Brotherhood-linked group, a pro-government newspaper reported.
 
The Federal Supreme Court in Abu Dhabi sentenced Mahmud al-Jidah, a Qatari, to seven years in prison followed by deportation, the online edition of the Gulf News reported, according to AFP. 
 
Abdul Wahid al-Badi and Saeed al-Buraimi, both Emiratis, were handed a five-year jail sentence each.
 
A third Emirati, Taher al-Tamimi, was acquitted, the English-language Gulf News said.
 
It said the three were accused of "aiding and abetting Al-Islah (reform)" group, identified by authorities as the local branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, and "collecting funds to support it".
 
Dozens of Islamists have been jailed in recent months in the United Arab Emirates as concern grows over the Muslim Brotherhood following the group's prominent role in Arab Spring uprisings.
 
On January 21, the same court, whose rulings are final, jailed a group of 10 Emiratis and 20 Egyptians to terms ranging from three months to five years for forming a Muslim Brotherhood cell.
 
The 10 UAE citizens were among 69 nationals jailed in July last year for up to 15 years on charges of plotting to overthrow the government.
 
Prosecutors said the accused were linked to Al-Islah.
 
UN expert Gabriela Knaul this month criticized "violations" and a "lack of transparency" in court proceedings in the UAE and urged an independent probe into allegations of torture in prisons.
 
The UAE has not seen any of the widespread protests that have swept other Arab states since 2011.
 
But authorities have cracked down hard on dissent and calls for democratic reform, drawing criticism from human rights groups.
 

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