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July 5, 2013

Around the World and Nation

Interim president of Egypt sworn in

CAIRO (AP) — Egypt’s military moved swiftly Thursday against senior figures of the Muslim Brotherhood, targeting the backbone of support for ousted President Mohammed Morsi. In the most dramatic step, authorities arrested the group’s revered leader from a seaside villa and flew him by helicopter to detention in the capital.

With a top judge newly sworn in as interim president to replace Morsi, the crackdown poses an immediate test to the new army-backed leadership’s promises to guide Egypt to democracy: The question of how to include the 83-year-old fundamentalist group.

That question has long been at the heart of democracy efforts in Egypt. Hosni Mubarak and previous authoritarian regimes banned the group, raising cries even from pro-reform Brotherhood critics that it must be allowed to participate if Egypt was to be free. After Mubarak’s fall, the newly legalized group vaulted to power in elections, with its veteran member Morsi becoming the country’s first freely elected president.

Now the group is reeling under a huge backlash from a public that says the Brotherhood and its Islamist allies abused their electoral mandate. The military forced Morsi out Wednesday after millions of Egyptians nationwide turned out in four days of protests demanding he be removed.

Adly Mansour, the head of the Supreme Constititonal Court, with which Morsi had repeated confrontations, was sworn in as interim president.

Morsi was abandoned by his allies but remained defiant

CAIRO (AP) — The army chief came to President Mohammed Morsi with a simple demand: Step down on your own and don’t resist a military ultimatum or the demands of the giant crowds in the streets of Egypt.

“Over my dead body!” Morsi replied to Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi on Monday, two days before the army eventually ousted the Islamist leader after a year in office.

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