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Egypt’s ousted President Mursi arrives at Cairo Police Academy for trial

Ousted Islamist President Mohammad Mursi's trial opens on Monday in a closed session.(File photo: Reuters)

Source : Al Arabiya with AP / 4 Nov 2013

Egyptian President Mohammad Mursi has arrived at the Police Academy in Cairo to attend trial on charges of inciting the killing of protesters in clashes outside the presidential palace in December 2012.

The head of Cairo’s Appeal Court said on Sunday that Mursi’s trial will not be broadcasted live on air, and that photographers and journalists will not be allowed to attend.

Egyptian authorities also decided on Sunday to move the trial to the Police Academy instead of the previously announced police institute near Cairo’s Tora prison, reported Al Arabiya’s Cairo correspondent.

The Cairo Police Academy, located on the outskirts of the city, is where Hosni Mubarak stood trial.

Police forces have been on high alert ahead of the trial with the deployment of over 20,000 security personnel .

The interior minister, accompanied by a number of security officials, visited the Police Institute to oversee the final preparations for the trial on Saturday.

A media adviser at the prime minister’s office denied the rumors about closing down a number of government offices during the trial.

Everything will continue as normal, including the current curfew, added the adviser.

Mursi, who was ousted by Egypt’s military on July 3, after massive protests against his rule, is due to appear in court along with 14 other senior Muslim Brotherhood figures on charges of inciting the killing of protesters in clashes outside the presidential palace in December 2012.

If found guilty, he and the other defendants could face life imprisonment or the death penalty.

Mursi’s son, Osama Mursi, said his family will not attend the trial and told the Associated Press that his family doesn’t recognize the trial’s “legitimacy.” Mursi “is kidnapped. He is held hostage,” he said.

On Sunday an Egyptian daily newspaper, al-Watan, leaked Mursi’s statements recorded during a July meeting with EU Foreign Affairs Chief Catherine Ashton, in which he rejected the charges against him.

According to the newspaper, Mursi said: “I totally refuse the issue that I'm accused [of] because the procedure of trying a president is completely different according to the constitution.

“If I go to trial, I will defend myself at court. I did not get involved in killing protesters. I will say this to the judges,” he reportedly added during the July 30 meeting, which took place at an undisclosed location.

The deposed Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated president has been kept at an undisclosed location since his overthrown.

Authorities have since then launched a crackdown on his supporters in which more than 1,000 have died and more than 2,000 members of the Brotherhood have been arrested.

 

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