The Turkish authorities have denied Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood preacher Wagdy Ghoneim citizenship. Ghoneim, who has been sentenced to death in Egypt, expressed his disappointment in a video broadcast on social media platforms.
Despite his joy and happiness over Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s re-election for another five-year term, Ghoneim admitted to feeling saddened by Ankara’s refusal to grant him citizenship. He added that he had applied for residence and citizenship nine years ago with the hope of being allowed freedom of movement, treatment in Turkey, and improved mobility. However, he was surprised by the government’s rejection, which came just hours before Erdogan’s election victory was announced. Ghoneim revealed that he is now looking for a new country to provide him shelter since he can no longer live and reside in Turkey.
Alarabiya.net has learned that the Turkish authorities have also denied citizenship to several members and young men of the Muslim Brotherhood, including media professionals and journalists, without providing any clarification or justification. In addition, they have refused to renew the residency of several others, implying their unwelcome presence in the country and subsequent departure.
In 2017, the Cairo Criminal Court sentenced Ghoneim and some of his accomplices from the Muslim Brotherhood to death for founding a cell, named “Wagdy Ghoneim’s Cell”, accused of committing terrorist acts and bombings in Egypt. The Egyptian prosecution charged the fugitive preacher and others with forming a group contrary to the law from 2013 until October 2015. This group’s purpose was to call for the disruption of the constitution and laws, to prevent state institutions and public authorities from carrying out their duties, to infringe upon citizens’ personal freedoms, and to harm national unity and social peace.
The prosecution also confirmed that Ghoneim led the group that calls for the excommunication of the ruler, the forceful overthrow of the government, and the legitimization of Christian bloodshed and their places of worship.
Wagdy Ghoneim, whose full name is Wagdy Abdul Hamid Mohamed Ghoneim, was born on February 8, 1951, in Alexandria governorate and is one of the leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood. He was expelled from Bahrain in 2008 due to his stance on Kuwait in the Iraq war and traveled to several countries, including England, from which he was expelled and later prohibited from re-entering on charges of incitement to terrorism.
He has been imprisoned in Egypt for several years and has also been detained in Canada, the United States, Switzerland, South Africa, and Yemen. In 2019, Tunisian authorities decided to prevent Wagdy Ghoneim from entering the country after he insulted and attacked the late President Beji Caid Essebsi.