Accessibility links

Breaking News

Defiant Morsi Rejects Trial, Insists He Remains President

Ousted Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi has rejected the trial against him that began Monday, insisting that he is the country's "legitimate president."

In his first public appearance since the military pushed him from power in July, Mr. Morsi was defiant. The start of the trial was delayed because he refused to dress in the traditional white jumpsuit worn by defendants.

A judge then adjourned the trial minutes after it began because of protest chants by Mr. Morsi and his co-defendants. It was expected to resume later Monday.

The trial is being held at the same Cairo police academy where another ousted leader, Hosni Mubarak, has faced prosecution.

Security was heavy outside the venue, where a crowd of Mr. Morsi's supporters gathered to protest what they say in an illegitimate trial.

Mr. Morsi and his 14 co-defendants are accused of inciting murder and violence during clashes outside the presidential palace last December. He could face the death penalty if found guilty.

The trial raised concern of inflaming the tensions that have plagued the country since the army removed Mr. Morsi from power on July 3. That move followed protests by the opposition who accused him of trying to monopolize power and failing to fix the country's economy.

Since then, Egyptian authorities have cracked down on the Brotherhood, arresting much of the group's top leadership and clashing with those demonstrating against the interim government. More than 1,000 people, mostly Islamists, have been killed in the fighting.

The Islamist Muslim Brotherhood has continually demanded that Mr. Morsi be reinstated as president.