The US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO), a conglomerate of major American Muslim civil advocacy groups, Tuesday (June 18) joined international calls for an investigation into the death of the former President Mohammed Morsi in Cairo’s Kangaroo court.
In a statement, the USCMO said the “public” collapse and death of President Morsi in court in his soundproofed cage warrant suspicion beyond medical neglect. Consequently, USCMO calls for an independent forensic autopsy to determine President Morsi’s actual cause of death.
The USCMO recalled that last year President Morsi’s youngest son, Abdullah, said in an interview with Agence France-Presse that Egypt’s ruling military junta was withholding medical treatment for his political prisoner father’s chronic illnesses, including high blood pressure and diabetes.
Malaysia, Qatar and Turkey have paid tribute to former Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi who died in the court, but reaction from other governments has been largely muted.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan Tuesday (June 18) attended a prayer service in Istanbul for Morsi.
Erdogan has denounced those who stood by as Morsi was “tortured” in prison. “I am condemning the Western world and humanity, who watched Morsi taken down in a coup and tortured in a prison cell,” he told a rally in Istanbul.
While thousands joined in prayer in Istanbul, in the capital, Ankara, about 500 people prayed in a central street, halting traffic outside the Egyptian embassy.
Members of the Ankara crowd chanted: “Murderer Sisi, martyr Morsi” and held up banners reading “Putschists will be defeated”, a reference to Morsi’s overthrow.
Turkey’s main opposition leader lashed out at the circumstances surrounding Morsi’s burial, saying his party would have wished Morsi to be buried with a presidential ceremony.
“He lost his life in a courtroom. We wish God’s mercy on him. We would have wished Mohamed Morsi to be buried with a presidential ceremony,” Kemal Kilicdaroglu of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) said.
“He was buried secretly, in a hurry, in the presence of only his family. I would like to express that I do not find this right in terms of our democracy, culture, beliefs and morals,” Kilicdaroglu added.
Not surprisingly, the US-client regime of Field Marshal Abdul Fattah el-Sisi has blocked access to the websites of Anadolu Agency (AA) and Turkey’s state television channel “TRT” on Tuesday.
A funeral prayer in absentia was held at the Al-Aqsa Mosque for Morsi. The funeral was held after isha, or the night prayers, at the mosque in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City.
UN rights office calls for ‘transparent investigation’
The United Nations human rights office has called for a “prompt, impartial, thorough and transparent investigation” into Morsi’s death.
“Concerns have been raised regarding the conditions of Mr. Morsi’s detention, including access to adequate medical care, as well as sufficient access to his lawyers and family, during his nearly six years in custody,” Rupert Colville, spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said on Monday.
Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani
Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani offered his condolences to Morsi’s family and Egyptian people.
“We received with great sorrow the news of the sudden death of former president Dr Mohamed Morsi. I offer my deepest condolences to his family and Egyptian people. We belong to God and to him we shall return,” Sheikh Tamim said in a Twitter post.
Malaysia expresses condolences
Malaysia’s foreign ministry said it was “shocked and saddened by the sudden death” of Morsi.
“During his tenure as president, Mr Morsi showed courage and moral fortitude in his attempt to lead Egypt away from decades of authoritarian rule and establish true democracy there,” Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah said in a statement.
“I would like to extend my deepest condolences to the bereaved family of Mr Morsi and the people of Egypt.”
Morsi buried hurriedly in Cairo
Observers on social media decried the apparent haste with which Morsi’s burial was carried out.
“The sudden, abrupt and restricted manner in which the Egyptian regime has enforced President #Morsi’s burial, raises even more questions regarding the circumstances of his death, and intensifies calls for an independent medical enquiry,” Anas Altikriti, founder of The Cordoba Foundation, said on Twitter.
Mahmoud Refaat, a foreign policy advisor at the European Institute for International Law and International Relations said the burial went against Egyptian tradition.
“In Egyptian tradition, which is considered quite sacred, we bury our dead during daylight hours, either after the duhr (noon) or afternoon (asr) prayers,” Refaat said on Twitter.
“It is also done where the dead was born. Forcing Morsi’s family to bury him in the middle of the night with only two of his sons present, and without his wife, only confirms that Egypt (authorities) has no honour and is being ruled by the Emirates,” he added, referring to the political ties between the government of el-Sisi and the United Arab Emirates.
‘Mistreatment of detainees’
There have been reports over the years that Morsi had been mistreated and tortured in jail, with activists saying on Monday his death should be seen in the context of the Egyptian authorities’ systematic isolation and mistreatment of political detainees.
Human Rights Watch called the news of Morsi’s death “terrible” but “entirely predictable”, citing the government’s “failure to allow him adequate medical care”.
“The government of Egypt today bears responsibility for his death, given their failure to provide him with adequate medical care or basic prisoner rights,” the group said in a statement to Al Jazeera.
Jamaat-e-Islami Hind: Morsi’s death was a murder
New Delhi: Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) has said death of the first democratic elected President of Egypt, Dr. Mohammed Morsi cannot be considered natural, rather it was a custodial murder and his martyrdom will strengthen the ‘Islamic Cause’ all over the world.
JIH President Syed Sadatullah Hussaini said,” legally elected President of the Egypt Dr.Morsi was forcibly ousted from power.
His death cannot be considered natural, rather it was a custodial murder, the sole responsibility of which lies on the illegitimate Egyptian govt and its self-proclaimed President and dictator Abdul Fattah el-Sisi.
The martyrdom of Dr.Morsi will strengthen the ‘Islamic Cause’ all over the world, Insha’Allah. May Allah accept his martyrdom, grant him the highest Paradise and give patience to his bereaved family members’’.
Expressing sorrow over Dr.Morsi’s death, the Jamaat President said, ‘Islamic world has lost a good leader in the death of Dr Morsi. It was a blatant murder of democracy when the legitimate government of Dr. Morsi that came to power through transparent and clean elections, was overthrown using violence and military power.
“The Sisi regime carried out fake trials by framing fabricated charges against Dr. Morsi and by harassing and incarcerating the legitimate President of Egypt, committed a gross violation of human rights. We demand that an enquiry be conducted at the international level on the murder of Dr.Morsi and award exemplary punishment to the guilty’’.
Morsi became Egypt’s first democratically elected president in 2012, one year after the Arab Spring uprising saw the end of President Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year rule. He was then deposed and arrested in July 2013 by US-client General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi who later assumed the title of Field Marshal and became President.
Abdus Sattar Ghazali is the Chief Editor of the Journal of America (www.journalofamerica.net) email: asghazali2011 (@) gmail.com