Leader of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood Mohammed Badie sits inside a defendants cage during his trial in Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, April 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Ahmed Omar)
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A senior U.S. senator has moved to block hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to Egypt to protest the death sentences imposed on nearly 700 suspected Islamists.The U.S. administration last week partially lifted a six-month freeze on some $1.5 billion in mostly military aid to Cairo – a key regional ally. Egypt has relied for decades on American aid, which amounts to about $1.5 billion per year.The leader of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood also criticized the death sentences handed to him and 682 others.Egypt's justice minister, however, rebuffed international criticism of a mass trial this week in which some 680 defendants were sentenced to death, saying the judiciary is not a tool of executive authority and that rulings can be overturned upon appeal.
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