4 July 2013, 12:36

Judge to lead Egypt after army ousts Morsi

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A top jurist will be sworn in as Egypt's interim president after the military overthrew the country's first democratically elected leader.

The army, whose commander also suspended the constitution and defended his actions as necessary to contain a deepening political crisis, is holding Mohammed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood at the Defence Ministry. Other Brotherhood leaders are under house arrest.

General Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi said Supreme Constitutional Court Justice Adly Mansour, will rule the country along with a non-partisan government until parliamentary and presidential elections were held.

Al-Sissi, who was appointed by Morsi some 12 month ago, was flanked by moderate and ultraconservative Muslim clerics, the head of Egypt's Coptic church and opposition leader and Nobel Peace Prize winner Mohamed ElBaradei.

Opposition groups have accused Morsi of reneging on an election promise of inclusive governance. They say he failed to address a deepening economic and social crisis, focusing instead on consolidating the Brotherhood's grip on power.

Rising energy and food costs further fueled public anger against his government and prompted at times violent mass protests.

In an apparent attempt to placate Morsi's Islamist backers, the army said Thursday it would not tolerate any violence, including attacks on Islamists.

"The measures taken by the Armed Forces' command did not at all mean to underestimate your role and standing," military spokesman Ahmed Ali said in a statement to Islamists.

"The Armed Forces will not allow insulting, provoking or attacking Islamists," he added.

Deadly clashes across Egypt follow Morsi ouster

At least 14 people were killed in clashes in several Egyptian cities between opponents and supporters of the deposed president, Mohammad Morsi, Al Jazeera television reported Thursday, citing state media and local officials. 

Eight people, including members of the security forces, were reported to have died in clashes in the northern city of Marsa Matrouh. Casualties were also reported in the port city of Alexandria, Minya in southern Egypt and Fayoum, south of Cairo.

The violence came after the army announced on Wednesday that Morsi was no longer president. Morsi was in custody in the Defence Ministry, a spokesman for his Muslim Brotherhood group said early Thursday.

Morsi's ouster came after days of massive anti-government protests in the capital Cairo and other major Egyptian cities.

Egypt's Morsi being held by authorities

Egypt's deposed President Mohamed Morsi, toppled by the military on Wednesday, is being held by the authorities, a Muslim Brotherhood spokesman and a security official said on Thursday.

Ahmed Aref, the Brotherhood spokesman, said both Morsi and Essam El-Haddad, a senior aide, were being held but he did not know where.

A security official said they were being held at a military intelligence facility.

"Morsi and the entire presidential team are under house arrest in the Presidential Republican Guards Club," Gehad El-Haddad, the son of a top Morsi aide, told AFP.

Haddad's father, Essam El-Haddad, widely seen as Morsi's right-hand man, was among those held, he added.

Tahrir Square salutes Morsi ouster

Loud cheers and fireworks in Tahrir Square greeted the announcement Wednesday by Egyptian Armed Forces Commander in Chief Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi that Mohammad Morsi was no longer the country's president.

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In a televised address, al-Sisi said the Supreme Constitutional Court would now act as president, with a national unity government tasked with running the country until early elections are held.

Al-Sisi, who was flanked by Grand Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb, Coptic Pope Tawadros II and military leaders, said the army had listened to the will of the people protesting against Morsi's government.

Egypt's Morsi being held by authorities

Egypt's deposed President Mohamed Morsi, toppled by the military on Wednesday, is being held by the authorities, a Muslim Brotherhood spokesman and a security official said on Thursday.

Ahmed Aref, the Brotherhood spokesman, said both Morsi and Essam El-Haddad, a senior aide, were being held but he did not know where.

A security official said they were being held at a military intelligence facility.

"Morsi and the entire presidential team are under house arrest in the Presidential Republican Guards Club," Gehad El-Haddad, the son of a top Morsi aide, told AFP.

Haddad's father, Essam El-Haddad, widely seen as Morsi's right-hand man, was among those held, he added.

8 dead, over 300 injured in Egypt – Health Minister

Eight people died and 343 were injured as a result of clashes in 17 Egyptian provinces, Health Minister Mustafa Khamed said today.

He pointed out that 116 patients are still in hospital and the others left medical centres after they felt better.

Khamed reported that the deaths of three people were registered in the province of El Minya, four in Mersa Matruh and one in Alexandria.

Egypt: Morsi offers consensus gov't as army deadline passes

President Mohamed Morsi on Wednesday proposed a "consensus government" as a way out of Egypt's crisis, as tens of thousands of political rivals took to the streets and an army deadline urging him to meet the people's demands expired. In the meantime, according to top Islamists, security slaps travel ban on the President.

"The presidency envisions the formation of a consensus coalition government to oversee the next parliamentary election," Morsi's office said in a statement on Facebook.

Despite the expiry of the deadline, the army was yet to announce its next move.

Tens of thousands of people continued to protest in Cairo's Tahrir Square for an anti-Morsi protest that dwarfed a rally by the embattled Islamist leader's supporters in Nasr City, on the opposite side of the capital.

"Come here O Sisi, Morsi isn't my president," the flag-waving protesters chanted in the square, referring to army chief and defence minister, General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

In scorching heat, police officers handed out bottles of water to the demonstrators crammed around their patrol vehicle in the middle of Tahrir, epicentre of the 2011 revolution that ousted dictator Hosni Mubarak.

The powerful military issued a 48-hour deadline on Monday for Morsi to meet the "people's demands", a day after millions of protesters took to the streets across the troubled country calling for him to resign.

Thousands of people were also gathered in Nasr City in a show of support for Morsi, despite an attack by a group of men that killed 16 of them and left 200 injured overnight.

That spate of bloodletting took to almost 50 the number of people killed in Egypt since the latest crisis flared a week ago ahead of Sunday's anniversary of Morsi's first turbulent year in power.

The interior ministry warned police would respond firmly to any further violence on Wednesday as the armed forces took up positions around key Cairo installations, including the state broadcaster.

Opponents accuse Morsi, Egypt's first democratically elected president, of having betrayed the 2011 revolution by concentrating power in Islamist hands and of sending the economy into freefall.

His supporters say he inherited many problems, and that he should be allowed to complete his term, which runs until 2016.

Voice of Russia, dpa, AFP, Reuters 

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