People and their vehicles are caught in a traffic jam in front of banners of Egypt's army chief, Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, with Coptic and Islamic leaders in Cairo
CAIRO: Egypt’s deposed president Mohamed Mursi yesterday urged supporters from a courtroom dock to continue their “revolution”, as a protest movement demanding his reinstatement shrinks before a fierce police crackdown.
The defiant call came during Mursi’s trial on charges related to jailbreaks and attacks on police, as a separate court acquitted six police officers of killing protesters during the 2011 uprising against his predecessor Hosni Mubarak.
Mursi’s Muslim Brotherhood still stages diminishing weekly protests despite a crackdown that has killed more than 1,400 people since the military overthrew him in July, after just one year in office.
“The revolution of the people won’t stop — continue your peaceful revolution,” said Mursi during the second hearing of the trial, one of three under way for the leader.
Speaking from inside a glass cage, Mursi also insisted that he remains the “president” of Egypt.
“I am present here by force,” he said.
He also blamed Field Marshal Abdel Fattah Al Sisi, the army chief who led his overthrow and who is expected to stand in and win presidential elections this spring, for the bloodshed across Egypt.
“The head of the coup, the defence minister, has killed more than 3,000 people in the streets. He is the one who killed them and it was not investigated, but he will be held accountable,” said Mursi.
Defence lawyer Kamal Mandour demanded that Sisi be investigated for “toppling the regime” of Mursi and for detaining him.
Mursi and 130 other defendants including Palestinian and Lebanese militants are charged with organising jailbreaks and attacking police stations during the 2011 revolt against Mubarak.
The trial was adjourned to February 24.