DOHA, Qatar, June 18 (UPI) -- Qatar has called for the release of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi following his death sentence.
An Egyptian court upheld a preliminary death sentence for Morsi on Tuesday.
Qatar has expressed concern over Morsi's life sentence – which equates to 25 years in prison in Egypt – and asked for his release. The U.S. has also condemned the sentence as being politically motivated.
"Doha [the capital of Qatar] adds its voice to the countries calling for vacating the verdict and releasing Morsi," wrote the Qatar News Agency Wednesday.
This comes after Qatar's compromise with neighboring Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates to back the new Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi despite actively sheltering members of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood.
Morsi is charged with conspiracy during the 2011 Wadi Natroun prison escape that ultimately availed him the presidency. The ruling exacerbated uprisings in Egpyt that called for greater freedom, justice and an end to 30 years of Hosni Mubarak's 30 year rule.
The court also upheld preiliminary death sentences for more than a hundred Muslim Brotherhood members.
Defendants had been accused of plotting terrorist action within Egypt. According to the Court, their plan was to send Muslim Brotherhood members to Iran's Revolutionary Guard and Shiite group Hezbollah to receive military training that they would then use to inflict terrorist acts upon Egypt and its citizens.
The sentences may still change following consideration by Egypt's highest religious authority, the Grand Mufti.
Morsi had also been sentenced to 20 years after being convicted of inciting turmoil outside the presidential palace in 2012. Morsi claimed he was the victim of current President al-Sisi's military coup.