Egypt bans Muslim Brotherhood group

CAIRO (AP) — An Egyptian court has banned the Muslim Brotherhood group and ordered its assets confiscated in a dramatic escalation of a crackdown by the military-backed government against supporters of the ousted Islamist president Mohammed Morsi.

Egypt state TV said the court issued its ruling on Monday.

The Brotherhood was outlawed for most of its 85 years in existence. But after the 2011 ouster of autocrat Hosni Mubarak, it was allowed to work openly, formed a political party and rose to power in a string of post-Mubarak elections. In March, it registered as a recognized non-governmental organization.

The ruling, which can be appealed, opens door for authorities to track down the group’s elaborate network of social services, dealing a deadly blow to its pillars of grass-root support.

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