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Egyptian security forces arrest deputy head of Muslim Brotherhood party

A masked protester stands in a cloud of tear gas during clashes with security forces dispersing several hundred pro- ousted President Mohammed Morsi university students who were rallying near Rabaah el-Adawiya, in eastern Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Oct. 28, 2013. As the protest got underway, army troops and police backed by armored vehicles blocked off the road leading to the site, creating a tense stand-off that lasted hours. By late afternoon, the students retreated to their campus, while pelting security forces with rocks.(AP Photo/Said Hamdy)

A masked protester stands in a cloud of tear gas during clashes with security forces dispersing several hundred pro- ousted President Mohammed Morsi university students who were rallying near Rabaah el-Adawiya, in eastern Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Oct. 28, 2013. As the protest got underway, army troops and police backed by armored vehicles blocked off the road leading to the site, creating a tense stand-off that lasted hours. By late afternoon, the students retreated to their campus, while pelting security forces with rocks.(AP Photo/Said Hamdy)  (The Associated Press)

Egypt's Interior Ministry says a key figure in the Muslim Brotherhood has been arrested after months on the run.

The ministry says Essam el-Erian, the deputy leader of the Brotherhood's political arm, the Freedom and Justice party, was apprehended in the early hours Wednesday in an apartment in an eastern Cairo suburb.

El-Erian is one of the few senior Islamist figures still on the run.

The media-savvy el-Erian was among the group's more moderate figures but turned hard-line and went into hiding after the July 3 coup that ousted President Mohammed Morsi, who hails from the same group.

Egypt's new, military-backed authorities have cracked down on the group, arresting hundreds of Brotherhood figures and putting top leaders on trial on charges of inciting violence and murder.