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 Snowstorm Sweeps Northeastern US

'This is nothing like we feared it would be,' New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says; he had earlier warned storm could be one of worst the city has ever faced More

Millions of Displaced Nigerians Struggle With Daily Existence

Government acknowledges over a million people displaced in 2014 due to fight against Boko Haram insurgency More

Facebook: Internal Error to Blame for Outages

Temporary outage appeared to spill over and temporarily slow or block traffic to other major Internet sites More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visiti
X
Aru Pande
January 26, 2015 9:33 PM
U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visit

U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video US, EU Threaten New Russia Sanctions Over Ukraine

U.S. President Barack Obama has blamed Russia for an attack by Ukrainian separatists that left dozens dead in the port of Mariupol and cast further doubt on the viability of last year’s cease-fire with the Kyiv government. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington.
Video

Video White House Grapples With Yemen Counterterrorism Strategy

Reports say the U.S. has carried out a drone strike on suspected militants in Yemen, the first after President Barack Obama offered reassurances the U.S. is continuing its counterterrorism operations in the country. The future of those operations has been in question following the collapse last week of Yemen’s government. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Kerry Warns Against Violence in Nigeria Election

US Secretary of State John Kerry visited Nigeria Sunday in a show of the level of concern within the U.S. and the international community over next month’s presidential election. Chris Stein reports.
Video

Video Zoo Animals Show Their Artistic Sides

The pursuit of happiness is so important, America's founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence. Any zookeeper will tell you animals need enrichment, just like humans do. So painting, and even music, are part of the Smithsonian National Zoo's program to keep the animals happy. VOA’s June Soh met some animal artists at the zoo in Washington. Faith Lapidus narrates.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Saudi, Yemen Developments Are Sudden Complications for Obama

The death of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah and the collapse of Yemen’s government have cast further uncertainty on U.S. efforts to fight militants in the Middle East and also contain Iran’s influence in the region. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports on the new complications facing the Obama administration and its Middle East policy.
Video

Video Progress, Some Areas of Disagreement in Cuba Talks

U.S. and Cuban officials are reporting progress from initial talks in Havana on re-establishing diplomatic ties. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State (for Western Hemisphere Affairs) Roberta Jacobson said while there was agreement on a broad range of issues, there also are some “profound disagreements” between Washington and Havana. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins has the story.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video S. Korean Businesses Want to End Trade Restrictions With North

Business leaders in South Korea are calling for President Park Geun-hye to ease trade restrictions with North Korea that were put in place in 2010 after the sinking of a South Korean warship.Pro-business groups argue that expanding trade and investment is not only good for business, it is also good for long-term regional peace and security. VOA’s Brian Padden reports.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid