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06/11/2013 | Egypt - Muhammad Morsi on trial

The Economist Staff

From president to prisoner

 

AS YET another trial of a deposed Egyptian president opened Monday morning it was a canny street hawker who may best have captured Egypt’s mood. His hopeful assumption was that, as with last year’s trial of Hosni Mubarak, the dictator overthrown by Egypt’s January 2011 revolution, clashing crowds would mingle outside the improvised courtroom at a police academy on the outskirts of Cairo. So he stocked wares to attract both sides.

For supporters of Muhammad Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood figurehead who was toppled from the presidency in July, he offered photos of the fallen ruler along with stickers featuring a yellow hand giving the four-fingered salute that has become a symbol of protest against the coup. Backers of the coup could instead choose Egyptian flags, or posters of the current strongman, army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

If Egyptians have grown weary of big, messy political show-trials, today’s event provided further cause. The hearing lasted barely 30 minutes, with a first brief session suspended after defence lawyers and their clients, who include 14 Muslim Brotherhood leaders along with Mr Morsi, shouted down the judge. “I am the legitimate president of the republic,” roared the ousted head of state, “and I am here by force and against my will!” “Hang him! Hang him!” came a shouted reply from a group of pro-coup journalists.

They clearly presumed the defendants guilty of the charge against them, which is that they bear responsibility for attacks by Muslim Brotherhood thugs against anti-Morsi protesters last year that left at least ten people dead. As expected, however, the judge adjourned the trial. It will not resume until January 8th.

Mercifully, clashes outside the court failed to escalate beyond attacks on reporters by Mr Morsi’s supporters, who regard most of Egypt’s media as cheerleaders of the coup. Anticipating wider trouble, many citizens had kept their children at home or stayed away from work. Pro-Morsi marches did snarl traffic in parts of the capital, and demonstrations broke out elsewhere in the country. Yet the total of 20 injured reported by nightfall was a far cry from the scores of dead and hundreds wounded recorded on all too many other recent days.

The relative calm reflects diminishing turnout by Brotherhood supporters, whose months of protest have failed to gain much traction among the wider public. But it is also evidence of a decision by police to lighten the heavy hand that has caused so much bloodshed in recent months. Like many of its people, Egypt’s current government wants more than anything to move on, and to forget previous ugly episodes.

The Economist (Reino Unido)

 


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25/12/2013 Analysis: As Egypt hardliners gain, scope for conflict grows
31/10/2013 Egypt’s Dark Tunnel
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25/07/2013 Egypt, Wheat and Revolutions
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15/05/2013 Egypt’s Political Instability Taking Toll on Its Economy
08/05/2013 Morsi begins visit to Brazil


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16/11/2008|
04/11/2008|
04/11/2008|
03/11/2008|
03/11/2008|
24/10/2008|
24/10/2008|
24/10/2008|
24/10/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
06/09/2008|
06/09/2008|
05/09/2008|
05/09/2008|
05/09/2008|
05/09/2008|
01/09/2008|
01/09/2008|
01/09/2008|
01/09/2008|
22/08/2008|
22/08/2008|
17/08/2008|
17/08/2008|
16/08/2008|
16/08/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
19/07/2008|
19/07/2008|
24/05/2008|
24/05/2008|
03/05/2008|
03/05/2008|
29/04/2008|
11/02/2008|
05/01/2008|
09/12/2007|
18/11/2007|
10/11/2007|
10/11/2007|
06/11/2007|
06/11/2007|
06/09/2007|
26/08/2007|
25/08/2007|
11/07/2007|
16/06/2007|
16/06/2007|
10/06/2007|
10/06/2007|
19/05/2007|
19/05/2007|
19/05/2007|
19/05/2007|
24/04/2007|
24/04/2007|
14/04/2007|
14/04/2007|
05/04/2007|
05/04/2007|
05/04/2007|
28/02/2007|
28/02/2007|
05/02/2007|
05/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
29/01/2007|
29/01/2007|
29/01/2007|
29/01/2007|
11/01/2007|
11/01/2007|
11/01/2007|
11/01/2007|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
20/12/2006|
20/12/2006|
17/11/2006|
30/09/2006|
28/07/2006|
12/04/2006|
12/04/2006|
12/04/2006|
06/03/2006|
21/02/2006|
17/02/2006|
31/01/2006|
10/01/2006|
28/12/2005|
31/10/2005|
26/09/2005|
29/08/2005|
11/08/2005|
08/08/2005|
24/06/2005|
24/06/2005|
24/06/2005|
03/04/2005|
03/04/2005|
03/04/2005|
03/04/2005|

ver + notas
 
Center for the Study of the Presidency
Freedom House