Middle East

Egypt court suspends Morsi murder trial

Egyptian policemen stand outside court in the working class Imbaba neighbourhood of Cairo on January 14, 2014. AFP PHOTO / KHALED DESOUKI

CAIRO: An Egyptian court suspended Thursday the murder trial of Mohammad Morsi after his lawyers requested new judges, sources said, the third such case against the deposed president to be put on hold.

The case is part of a relentless crackdown the government has been waging against Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood movement since the military ousted him on July 3, ending a turbulent year of rule.

Morsi stands accused of inciting the killing of opposition protesters outside the presidential palace in December 2012.

Defence lawyers have requested that two of the three judges presiding over the murder trial be replaced, alleging one of them spoke about the case in a media interview.

An appeals court will examine the recusal request and decide whether to appoint a new panel of judges. It is unclear when the appeals court will look into the request.

A similar request for appointing new judges has already been made in two other trials involving Morsi, and an Egyptian appeals court is expected to decide on it on April 9.

In one of the trials, Morsi and others are accused of breaking out of jail during the 2011 uprising that toppled veteran president Hosni Mubarak.

The second trial concerns accusations of espionage against the Islamist president.

Morsi is also to face a fourth trial on charges of insulting the judiciary, but a date for that has yet to be set.





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