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Morsi’s trial is illegal: Legal Team for Coup Victims

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Several lawyers claim that the court is illegitimate since Morsi has not resigned

Egyptian supporters of deposed president Mohamed Morsi hold up his portrait and wave their national flag, as they continue to hold a sit in outside Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque on July 24, 2013.  (AFP File Photo)

Egyptian supporters of deposed president Mohamed Morsi hold up his portrait and wave their national flag, as they continue to hold a sit in outside Cairo’s Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque on July 24, 2013.
(AFP File Photo)

The media spokesman for the Legal Team for Coup Victims said Monday that ousted president Mohamed Morsi will not recognise the court’s authority.

The Coup Victims stated that “his team would be all Egyptian and will only observe proceedings.”

Morsi will begin standing trial on 4 November and is facing charges related to violence that occurred in December 2012 in front of the  Presidential Palace.

In a statement released by the Legal Team of Coup Victims, they said: “No lawyers will be representing the president.” They added that this is due to Mohamed Morsi “not recognising the trial” or any of the “actions and processes that resulted from the coup.”

“A number of newspapers have been spreading false news about the abducted President Mohamed Morsi’s defence team… claiming that the International Muslim Brotherhood has appointed a number of senior foreign lawyers from Qatar and Turkey to defend the President….We stress that these rumours are completely unfounded,” the statement added.

Media Spokesman for the Legal Team for Coup Victims Mostafa Azab, concluded the statement with a “call on all human rights lawyers in the whole free world, to attend the president’s trial, to observe the proceedings, to witness the trampling of justice, and to see for themselves the crimes committed by security authorities in Egypt with the help of the public prosecution service.”

In September, Morsi was referred by the General Prosecution to the Criminal Court for his alleged role in the clashes that occurred on the evening of 5 December.

The clashes were a result of a protest by Muslim Brotherhood supporters, who attempted to forcibly evacuate anti-Brotherhood supporters who were conducting a sit-in. At least five were killed in the violence and over 700 were injured.

According to Secretary-General of the lawyer syndicate Mohamed Toson, the trial is “illegal and unconstitutional due to the incompletion of legal grounds, which entail that the trial of a president has to be with the consent of two-thirds of the parliament, which is currently non-existent.”

Toson added that Morsi “cannot be tried as a citizen due to his refusal to step down as president” and that a “presidential title ends either through death, end of the legal term or resignation.”

The only method of trying Mohamed Morsi is according to the 2012, 1971 and the 1956 constitutions, which specify that if a “president is to be tried, it has to be ahead of an exceptional court and through the consent of the majority of the parliament.”

“It doesn’t matter if you support Morsi or disagree with him on a personal level, the law is the law, and if the court decides to go through with the trial, it will be a legal scandal on a domestic and international level,” Toson stated.

Hany Al-Dardeery, member of Lawyers Against the Coup and an alleged witness of the Presidential Palace incidents, confirmed that “Morsi does not recognise the court, as it is an illegal, putschist court.”

Al-Dardeery suspected that Morsi will not be allowed to appear in the first session of the trial, adding: “The government will be fearful of the reaction and evidence to this is that the court is still unannounced.”

He also said that the ousted president has “sole jurisdiction to accept or refuse a defence team.”


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