Al-Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding
News, November 2013
Mursi Refuses to Acknowledge Legality of the Court, as He's Still the Lawful President of Egypt
November 4, 2013
The Ikhwan Online publication mentioned today, November 4, 2013, that President Mursi said to the judge: "I'm your lawful president, and you're (your court is) illegal.
Anatolia news agency reported that President Mursi and other kidnapped politicians (who are on trial by the army-backed government) replied to the judge's questions with the slogan of Rabi'a Al-Adawiya (in reference to the massacre committed by the police forces against Mursi's supporters). They also shouted: "Down with the military rule."
The court judges lifted the session, in response to the shouting, demanding that President Mursi comes to the court in the future with prison uniform, instead of the formal suit he appeared with at the court today.
Former Justice Minister, Ahmed Makki, said that the Republican Guard Corp is involved in the kidnapping of President Mursi.
Yussri Hammad said: "The charges leveled against the elected lawful president, Dr. Muhammed Mursi, is a disgrace to the (Egyptian) judiciary.
من داخل المحكمة:
الرئيس محمد مرسي قال للقاضي: أنا رئيسك الشرعي وأنت باطل... وكالة الأناضول: الرئس مرسي و المختطفون معه يردون على استفسارات قاضي المحاكمة الهزلية الباطلة بإشارة "رابعة العدوية" ويهتفون: يسقط يسقط حكم العسكر...
المستشار أحمد مكي وزير العدل السابق: الحرس الجمهوري ضالع في اختطاف الرئيس مرسي...
يسري حماد: الاتهامات الموجهة للرئيس الشرعي المنتخب الدكتور محمد مرسي عار في جبين القضاء...
هيئة المحكمة الانقلابية الهزلية ترفع الجلسة بسبب هتافات المختطفين...
مصادر تؤكد أن الرئيس محمد مرسي يبدو مبتسمًا يرفض ارتداء زي الاتهام لعدم اعترافه بالمحاكمة الهزلية ويؤكد أنه الرئيس الشرعي للبلاد.
Mursi faces trial in Egypt in test of democracy
By Yasmine Saleh and Yara Bayoumy
Mon Nov 4, 2013 3:44am EST
CAIRO (Reuters) -
Ousted Egyptian president Mohamed Mursi arrived at a Cairo police academy on Monday to face trial in what opponents of the army-backed government say is part of a campaign to crush his Muslim Brotherhood and revive a police state.
It is the second time in just over two years that an overthrown president has been in court in Egypt, a nation some fear is sliding back into autocratic rule.
The Muslim Brotherhood has said it will not abandon street protests to pressure the army, which toppled Mursi on July 3, to reinstate him.
But a heavy security presence across the country served as a reminder of a crackdown in which hundreds of Mursi supporters were killed and thousands more rounded up.
The uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak in 2011 had raised hopes that Egypt would embrace democracy and human rights and eventually enjoy economic prosperity.
Instead, the power struggle between the Brotherhood and the army-backed government has created more uncertainty.
The trial of Mursi and 14 other Islamists on charges of inciting violence is likely to be the next flashpoint in their confrontation.
They face charges of inciting violence relating to the deaths of about a dozen people in clashes outside the presidential palace in December after Mursi enraged his opponents with a decree expanding his powers.
The defendants could face a life sentence or death penalty if found guilty.
Mursi travelled to the heavily guarded courthouse from an undisclosed location by helicopter, state media said. The trial is taking place in the same venue where Mubarak has also been facing trial for complicity in killing protesters.
Hundreds of Mursi supporters gathered outside the building to pledge their support for the deposed leader. One sign read "The will of the people has been raped", a reference to the army takeover which followed mass protests against his rule.
Tahrir Square, where Egyptian protesters had gathered during the uprising against Mubarak, and later Mursi, was sealed off by army personnel carriers and barbed wire.
The Brotherhood had won every election since Mubarak's fall and eventually propelled Mursi into power after the Islamist movement endured repression under one dictator after another.
But millions of Egyptians who grew disillusioned with Mursi's troubled one-year rule took to the streets this summer to demand his resignation.
The army, saying it was responding to the will of the people, deposed him and announced a political roadmap it said would lead to free and fair elections.
But the promises have not reassured Egypt's Western allies, who had hoped the stranglehold of military men would be broken.
CALL FOR PROTESTS
On the eve of Mursi's trial, Egypt's Al Watan newspaper released a video on its website of what it said was him speaking to unidentified individuals during his incarceration.
Dressed in a tracksuit, Mursi said his overthrow was "a crime in every way". Al Watan did not say when the video was taken.
The Brotherhood has called on its supporters to stage mass protests on Monday, but the size of their demonstrations has shrunk because of heavy policing.
"We have faith that the heroic Egyptian people will not let go of their freedom, dignity and value and will instead crawl to the unfair farce of a trial," the group said in a statement.
Speaking to a local television channel, Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim warned the group: "If the Brotherhood commit any violations, they will regret it."
Riot police crushed two pro-Mursi protest camps on August 14, and hundreds of Islamists have been killed and thousands arrested, including the Brotherhood's top leaders.
Egypt's oldest and most influential Islamist group has also been banned and its funds seized. Army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who toppled Mursi, has become immensely popular. Few doubt his victory if he runs for president.
The Brotherhood maintains Mursi's removal was a coup that reversed the democratic gains made after Mubarak's overthrow.
"It is clear that the goal of this trial as well as any action against the Muslim Brotherhood is to wipe out the group as well as any Islamist movements from political life," said Mohamed Damaty, a volunteer defense lawyer for Mursi.
Amnesty International said the trial was a "test for the Egyptian authorities" who should grant Mursi a fair trial.
"Failing to do so would further call into question the motives behind his trial," said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Amnesty International's Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa Programme.
In the most senior visit to Cairo by a U.S. official since Mursi's fall, Secretary of State John Kerry also called for a fair, transparent trial for all Egyptians.
Egyptian officials admit the path to democracy has been rocky, but say a proper political transformation will take time.
Speaking to Reuters by phone, Osama Mursi, the deposed president's 30-year-old son, said his father had not authorized a defense lawyer and the family would not be attending the trial. "We do not acknowledge the trial. We are proud of my father and feel strong about his position."
(Additional reporting by Hadeel al-Shalchi; Writing by Yara Bayoumy; Editing by Michael Georgy)
Judge in Mohammed Morsi trial adjourns hearing
Ousted Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi appeared for the first time in public since his ouster on July 3 for a trial that was swiftly adjourned. Morsi faces charges of inciting murder in connection with the deaths of protesters last December.
By FRANCE 24 (text)
November 4, 2013
Egypt's state TV says the judge in the trial of the country's deposed Islamist president and 14 others has adjourned the hearing soon after it started because the defendants' chants were disrupting the proceedings.
The adjournment, likely to last till later on Monday, came after a two-hour delay in the start of the proceedings.
Security officials inside the courtroom said the delay was caused by Mohammed Morsi's insistence not to change into the prison uniform customarily worn by defendants, part of his refusal to recognise the trial's legitimacy.
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak to the media.
Morsi and the others are charged with inciting murder and
could face the
Morsi’s trial marks his first appearance in public since he was ousted on July 3 and locked up in secret detention, virtually incommunicado. He plans to defend himself, rejecting the court’s authority and claiming he is still Egypt’s true president, thereby energising his supporters in the street.
The trial raises fears of a resurgence of violence in the country with Morsi supporters planning widespread protests and police announcing a state of alert.
A coalition of Morsi backers from the Brotherhood and its allies have promised to "make this day an international day of protest” declaring “We will defeat this brutal traitorous military coup."
Security concerns are so high that the precise location of the trial was not made known until early on Monday.
Since Morsi’s ouster, the country has seen a deadly crackdown on his Islamist Muslim Brotherhood movement, with more than 1,000 pro-Morsi supporters and dozens of security officials killed during clashes at protests.
Likelihood for real justice ‘compromised’
Rights groups have warned that Morsi may not receive a fair trial.
“What concerns me about this trial is that the justice system has been extremely selective and there has been almost near impunity for security services for the killing of hundreds of protesters,” said Heba Morayef, Egypt director for Human Rights Watch.
“And in that kind of environment of politicised prosecutions, the likelihood for real justice is compromised.”
The trial marks the first time the country has two ex-presidents on trial. Morsi’s predecessor Hosni Mubarak is currently on retrial after being convicted last year of complicity in the killing of demonstrators during the 2011 protests which led to his overthrow.
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