Morsi Trial Adjourned, Fails to Reach Court Due to Weather - The New Indian Express

Morsi Trial Adjourned, Fails to Reach Court Due to Weather

Published: 08th January 2014 05:46 PM

Last Updated: 08th January 2014 05:46 PM

Deposed Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi's murder trial was adjourned today to February 1 as the Islamist leader could not reach the court due to bad weather that prevented his helicopter from taking off.            

"Because of the weather conditions, Mohamed Morsi could not be brought, so the trial will be adjourned to February 1," presiding judge Ahmed Sabry Youssef said.      

Alexandria Security Chief Nasser El-Abd told state TV that the helicopter set to transfer 62-year-old Morsi for the trial session could not take off from his Alexandria prison due to bad weather conditions, Ahram Online reported.      

Morsi was to be transferred by helicopter from the heavily guarded Burg Al-Arab Jail, west of Alexandria, to the Police Academy in New Cairo for the trial proceedings.          

Morsi's appearance today would have been his second public sighting since the army deposed him last July after millions protested his troubled year-long rule. His first appearance took place during the first session of the trial on November 4.         

Morsi and 14 co-defendants face trial on charges of inciting murder and violence outside the Presidential Palace in December 2012, when thousands of his supporters attacked a small opposition sit-in staged to protest a constitutional declaration issued by Morsi granting himself extra powers.     

The ensuing clashes led to the deaths of nine people.          

If found guilty, Morsi could face life imprisonment or the death penalty.         

Morsi's co-defendants, seven of whom are being tried in absentia, include prominent Brotherhood members Mohamed El-Beltagi and Essam El-Erian, as well as several Morsi aides and other well-known Islamist preachers and activists.  

The first session, which took place in November, marked the first time Egyptians and the world saw Morsi since he was ousted from power in July.            

The ousted president, El-Beltagi and El-Erian also stand trial in a separate espionage case.     Morsi is also scheduled to appear in another trial on January 28, along with 130 others, in a January 2011 jailbreak case.          

The pro-Morsi National Coalition to Support Legitimacy had called for mass protests at today's trial venue.

Egypt's Interior Ministry said Morsi's high profile trial was secured by 20,000 police officers.     

Morsi was removed from office by the military on July 3 after millions of Egyptians called for his overthrow in mass protests.

 The Brotherhood-dominated Shura Council was dissolved and the constitution drafted by the group and its allies was subjected to extensive amendments.          

The amended charter is to be put to a referendum on January 14 and 15.

The Brotherhood-led National Coalition to Support Legitimacy has said it does not recognise the legitimacy of the trial claiming Morsi has been kidnapped by an "illegitimate authority."

In the first court session, Morsi attempted to disrupt the proceedings by insisting he was still the legitimate president and denounced the trial as a farce. Morsi's co-defendants also condemned the army and chanted against the judiciary.

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