Trial of Morsi adjourned to February 23

Updated: 2014-02-17 10:17


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CAIRO - A Cairo court adjourned Sunday the trial of Egypt's former president Mohamed Morsi over charges of espionage to February 23, official news agency MENA reported.

Trial of Morsi adjourned to February 23
Anti-military protest held across Egypt

Presiding judge Shaaban El-Shami asked for mandating ten lawyers for the defendants.

The other defendants include Muslim Brotherhood supreme guide Mohamed Badei and his two deputies Khairat al-Shater and Mahmoud Ezzat, former parliament speaker Saad al-Katatni and others.

They are accused of collaborating with foreign bodies, spying for the international organization of the Muslim Brotherhood, its military wing and the (Palestinian) Hamas movement to carry out terrorist acts in Egypt.

Morsi's lawyer Sileem al-Awaa urged the judge to remove the glass cage in which the defendants were placed, charging it prevented defendants from hearing the prosecution or their lawyers.

But the judge refused his demand.

"The court doesn't want me to interact with the people...They are afraid of my appearance as the court doesn't have popular support," Morsi said and asked his lawyer not to continue this session.

"Down, down with the military rule," other Brotherhood members behind the dock also shouted and hit glass sheets with hands, causing chaos in the court.

It is the fourth time that Morsi, who is currently kept at Borg al-Arab Prison in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, appeared in public since his removal by the military last year.

The former Islamist president also faces other lawsuits over charges of jailbreak, inciting violence and murdering protesters outside the presidential palace in early December 2012.

He will also face trial over insulting the judiciary, but the date hasn't been set yet.

The hearing is held at the Police Academy complex in eastern Cairo, where a heavy security presence stands guard. The security plan involved 35 units of the Central Security forces, 30 special combat groups, 44 armored vehicles, a high-ranked security source was quoted by official news agency MENA as saying.