News / Middle East

Ousted Egyptian President Defiant at Trial, General Assassinated

In this image taken from Egypt State TV,  Mohammed Morsi stands inside a glass-encased metal cage in a courtroom in Cairo, Jan. 28. 2014.
In this image taken from Egypt State TV, Mohammed Morsi stands inside a glass-encased metal cage in a courtroom in Cairo, Jan. 28. 2014.
Edward Yeranian
Ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi protested defiantly from a soundproof glass and metal cage as he went on trial Tuesday in Cairo on charges connected with a mass jail break during the 2011 uprising against long-time autocrat Hosni Mubarak.

The court session comes as General Abdel Fatteh el-Sissi, the defense minister who toppled Morsi in July, got the army's blessing for a bid to replace him as president.

Video showed Morsi dressed in a white jumpsuit angrily shouting "Who are you? Tell me!" at the courtroom judge, who yelled back "I am the president of Egypt’s criminal court!"

The microphone in Morsi's cage was then turned off.

Mohamed Morsi faces trials in Egypt for:

  • Murder and other charges from his 2011 jailbreak
  • Inciting violence against anti-government protesters in 2012
  • Insulting the judiciary
  • Conspiring with foreign groups, including Hamas, to commit terrorist acts
The prosecutor read out the charges against Morsi and his co-defendants Tuesday, detailing the allegations of the wide-scale prison break during the January 2011 revolution. Defendants from the Palestinian Hamas group and Lebanon's Hezbollah were among those accused. 

Morsi supporters in the audience chanted briefly as the charges were announced, claiming that the trial was “illegal.” It was different from the many disruptions by defendants during the initial session last December. That session was stopped after the judges resigned.

The former president, making his second public appearance since his ouster, is being tried along with 130 people, including leaders of his Muslim Brotherhood.

Media reports say Morsi was flown by helicopter to the trial from his prison in Alexandria at an undisclosed time. Analysts say the government was worried attackers might try to blow up the helicopter transporting him.

Assassination

Firefighters attend the funeral service of General Mohamed Saeed, head of the technical office of the minister of interior, in Cairo, Egypt, Jan. 28, 2014.Firefighters attend the funeral service of General Mohamed Saeed, head of the technical office of the minister of interior, in Cairo, Egypt, Jan. 28, 2014.
x
Firefighters attend the funeral service of General Mohamed Saeed, head of the technical office of the minister of interior, in Cairo, Egypt, Jan. 28, 2014.
Firefighters attend the funeral service of General Mohamed Saeed, head of the technical office of the minister of interior, in Cairo, Egypt, Jan. 28, 2014.
Earlier Tuesday, assassins shot and killed a top interior ministry official, General Mohamed Sa'eed, outside his Cairo home, before the trial began. Militants also blew up a natural gas pipeline in the northern Sinai. A bomb placed near a Cairo court, however, was found and defused.

Said Sadek, who teaches political sociology, says that both the recent referendum to approve a new constitution and the probable candidacy of Defense Minister Abdel Fatteh el-Sissi appear to have dealt a damaging blow to the Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamist allies.

"Now we are getting into a new game and a new legitimacy, new political rules, and so of course that depressed and demoralized the supporters of Morsi because they felt now the die is cast, there is nothing to be done,” he said.

Sadek adds that “frustration and disappointment” may lead many Morsi supporters to turn to violence, but he does not believe this will “change history.” He argues that the coalition which united on June 30 to oust Morsi is a strong core of Egyptian society which includes “the middle class, the upper class, businessmen, the so-called “deep state” and the military,” and it remains more versatile than the Muslim Brotherhood.

The next session of Morsi's trial has been pushed up to Feb. 22.

The former president's second trial for allegedly inciting violence against anti-government protesters in 2012 is due to resume Saturday, after being postponed twice since it opened in November.  

A third case focuses on charges that he insulted the judiciary and a fourth deals with charges of espionage in collaboration with Hamas. It was not immediately clear if a Feb. 14 trial date for the espionage charges of “conspiring with outside parties” will go ahead as scheduled.

Egypt's military removed Morsi from office last July, and authorities have spent months cracking down on the Muslim Brotherhood, including arresting many of its leaders and declaring it a terrorist group.
 
Some information for this report comes from Reuters, AP.

You May Like

Photogallery US Nurse ‘Cured of Ebola,’ NIH Says

Nina Pham, Texas nurse who treated first Ebola patient in US, received no experimental drugs; WHO expects vaccine surge in 2015 More

Video Islamic State Militants Encroach on Baghdad

update Iraqi capital not under ‘imminent threat,’ US military says, amid worries about foothold More

Video Hong Kong Protesters Focus on Holding Volatile Mong Kok

Activists say holding Mong Kok is key to their movement's success, despite confrontations with angry residents and police More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid