ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – Ninety four people have gone on trial in the United Arab Emirates on charges of trying to overthrow the state as authorities barred international media and several rights groups from the proceedings.
The trial marks is the culmination of a crackdown that started last year on Islamist groups in the Emirates with suspected links to the Muslim Brotherhood. Rights groups have criticized the crackdown and it has also raised tensions with Egypt, which is governed by the Islamist group.
Monday's hearing was attended by about 200 relatives of the defendants who were bussed to the security court in the capital, Abu Dhabi.
Khalid al-Roken, whose brother Mohammed is on trial, said before boarding a bus that the charges were baseless but that he remains hopeful his brother would be freed.