Egypt to Probe El Baradei for 'Espionage'
In a crackdown on opposition leaders, Egyptian Prosecutor General has ordered a probe against three former presidential candidates, including ex-IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei, accusing them of espionage and conspiring a "Zionist plot" against the Islamist government.

Prosecutor General Talaat Ibrahim Abdallah yesterday referred to the State Security Prosecution a complaint accusing ElBaradei, Hamdein Sabahy and Amr Moussa of spying and inciting the overthrow of President Mohamed Mursi.

Hamed Sadeq, a lawyer who filed the complaint, also accused Wafd Party president Al-Sayed al-Badawy and Judges Club head Ahmed al-Zend of espionage and sedition.

Sadeq claimed that Moussa met with former Israeli foreign minister Tzipi Livni and agreed with her to fabricate internal crises, and that all of the politicians named in his complaint then met at the Wafd Pary headquarters here to implement the "Zionist plot."

He requested that the accused be banned from travel and that the Wafd Party headquarters be confiscated for probe.

Earlier, founder of the Constitution Party ElBaradei, head of the Conference Party Moussa and founder of the Popular Current Party Sabahy all declared their support to the ongoing anti-Mursi protests after the latter assumed absolute power through a decree, sparking the current crisis.

Filing criminal charges against opposition figures was a common practice during ousted president Hosni Mubarak's era.

Ghad al-Thawra Party leader Ayman Nour was sentenced to five years in prison in December 2005 for allegedly forging signatures to enable him to register the Ghad Party.

The party had been approved in 2004. Nour was released from prison in February 2009.

Nour finished second after Mubarak in the presidential election in September 2005. Some observers argued that the case was punishment for his unexpected bid for presidency.
Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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