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The who, what and why of the latest Egyptian revolution

world Updated: Jul 04, 2013 23:36 IST
egypt

Egypt's army ousted the country's first democratically elected president, Mohamed Morsi, bringing to an end his 12 month controversy strewn reign, following incessant protests and economic woes in the country.

The army confirmed on Thursday that it was holding Morsi under house arrest, as a preventive measure.

Morsi's defence minister, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, announced Morsi's overthrow on state television on Wednesday.

Egypt's chief justice Adli al-Mansour will serve as interim president until new presidential elections are organized. He is expected to be sworn in on Thursday.

Thousands of protesters took it to the streets of Cairo and celebrated at the news of Morsi's downfall, letting off fireworks and sounding car horns.

Fatal Clashes

Across Egypt, particularly in, Alexandria and Minya pro and anti-Morsi supporters engaged in violence. According to agency reports 10 were killed in the clashes.

Already in the past week, at least 50 people died in clashes between the Islamist's supporters and opponents.

Morsi detained

Morsi was detained along with senior aides after issuing a defiant call for supporters to protect his elected "legitimacy", in a recorded speech hours ouster was announced.

"We had to confront it at some point, this threatening rhetoric," the military officer said.

"He succeeded in creating enmity between Egyptians," he added.

US concerned

US President Barack Obama said he was "deeply concerned" over Morsi's ouster and urged the army to refrain to "arbitrary arrests" of Morsi and his supporters.

In May, Washington approved $1.3 billion in military aid to Egypt. That was now under review, said Obama, as he called for a swift return to democratic rule.

Aftermath

In his speech, Sisi, Army chief laid out details of the roadmap for a political transition.

The Islamist-drafted constitution would be frozen and presidential elections held early, he said, without specifying when.

The armed forces, which had deployed troops and armour across the country, would "remain far away from politics," he stressed.

In Cairo, celebrations at the news began immediately.

"It's a new historical moment. We got rid of Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood," said one celebrator, Omar Sherif.

In an amateur video posted online after Sisi's announcement on Wednesday, Morsi declared: "I am the elected president of Egypt" and urged people to "defend this legitimacy".

Morsi's opponents had accused him of failing the 2011 revolution by concentrating power in the hands of his Muslim Brotherhood.

His year in power was marked by a spiralling economic crisis, shortages in fuel and often deadly opposition protests.

The embattled 61-year-old had proposed a "consensus government" as a way out of the crisis, the worst since the 2011 uprising that ended three decades of authoritarian rule by Hosni Mubarak.

But it failed to satisfy his critics and the army stepped in.

Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei, former head of the UN nuclear watchdog, sat beside army chief Sisi as he announced on state television that Morsi's rule was over.

A timeline of who, what and why of the latest Egyptian revolution

(With inputs from AFP , AP)