Morsy arrested, Muslim Brotherhood spokesman says
Fireworks light the Cairo sky Wednesday as opponents of the now-ousted President Mohamed Morsy celebrate in Tahrir Square.
July 3rd, 2013
10:19 PM ET

Morsy arrested, Muslim Brotherhood spokesman says

  • Egypt's top military leader announces Wednesday night that President Mohamed Morsy has been removed from power
  • Head of Egypt's constitutional court will be temporary president until new constitution is drawn up and new elections can be held
  • The military demanded that Morsy share power with opponents after anti-government protests
  • Morsy, elected last year, refused to comply; mass protests continue to support him
  • Refresh this page for the latest news we're seeing and hearing. Catch up with our full story here.

[Updated at 11:52 p.m. ET, 5:52 a.m. in Egypt] Some 40 anti-Morsy protesters are planning to meet with cleaning equipment to polish up their former protest campground, Tahrir Square.  They have invited over 2,000 people to join them on Facebook. 

[Updated at 11:03 p.m. ET, 5:30 a.m. in Egypt] CNN's Jake Tapper outlines some fine points of Obama's reaction to the Egyptian military's actions:

President Obama’s statement Wednesday evening about the Egyptian military’s seizure of power from President Mohamed Morsy is as telling for what he doesn’t say as for what he does: he doesn’t mention the word “coup.” He doesn’t call upon the Egyptian military to restore power to the “democratically elected civilian government,” but rather to a“democratically elected civilian government” - in other words, it need not be Morsy’s.

The thinking of the president and senior Obama administration officials, according to a knowledgeable source, is that while the administration is not explicitly supporting the removal of Morsy from power - it expressly did not support the move - it is seeking to now push the Egyptian military in a direction.

If the Obama administration were to use the word “coup.” that would have legal ramifications that would result in the end of U.S. aid. If White House officials were to pull the plug completely, they would be removing themselves from the picture altogether.

[Updated at 10:19 p.m. ET, 4:19 a.m. in Egypt] CNN's Ben Wedeman, who spent time at a pro-Morsy rally in Cairo on Wednesday evening, reported he spoke to one protester who said he felt demonstrators would stay there "until Mohamed Morsy is once again president of Egypt."

Wedeman recalled the exchange early Thursday after leaving the pro-Morsy rally to go to the larger gathering at Cairo's Tahrir Square, where people still were celebrating Morsy's ouster.

Wedeman said that although much focus is on the joy and excitement at Tahrir Square, "there's a significant portion of the Egyptian population (although) I wouldn’t suggest it’s a majority who are very upset at what has happened."

Wedeman, a CNN senior international correspondent who'd previously served as CNN's Cairo bureau chief, said it appeared the overall mood in Egypt would be different than 2011, when then-President Hosni Mubarak was deposed. In 2011, Wedeman said, Mubarak's supporters kept a low profile for months.

"There's not going to be that quiet after the storm this time around," Wedeman said.

[Updated at 10:06 p.m. ET, 4:06 a.m. in Egypt] Get ready for an extremist backlash to Morsy's ouster, says Mohammed Ayoob, Michigan State University professor emeritus of international relations.

"The major lesson that Islamists in the Middle East are likely to learn from this episode is that they will not be allowed to exercise power no matter how many compromises they make in both the domestic and foreign policy arenas," Ayoob wrote for a CNN.com opinion piece. "This is likely to push a substantial portion of mainstream Islamists into the arms of the extremists who reject democracy and ideological compromise."

CNN's Ben Wedeman, reporting from Cairo, also said there's a danger that some members of the Muslim Brotherhood will break from the main group and "challenge (Egypt's new leaders) with violence."

They may take the attitude of "we tried to play the game, our leaders were jailed, our media have been shut down ... so we’re going to destroy the system," said Wedeman, who is a CNN senior international correspondent and had previously been CNN's Cairo bureau chief.

[Updated at 9:23 p.m. ET, 3:23 a.m. in Egypt] U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has echoed Obama's call for a quick return to civilian rule. He appealed for "calm, non-violence, dialogue and restraint."

[Updated at 8:24 p.m. ET, 2:24 a.m. in Egypt] More about arrests in Egypt, from CNN's interview with Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Gehad El-Haddad:

Morsy was arrested by presidential guards at their headquarters, and is being "cut off" from the world, El-Haddad told CNN. "They cut all his access, all his calls. No one is meeting him," the spokesman said.

Members of Morsy's presidential team also were arrested, El-Haddad said.

The head of Egypt's Freedom and Justice Party and the deputy leader of the Muslim Brotherhood also were arrested, according to El-Haddad.

El-Haddad told CNN he understands that hundreds of names have been put on an "arrest list," but "I can't confirm any arrests apart from these."

[Updated at 8:03 p.m. ET, 2:03 a.m. in Egypt] Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Gehad El-Haddad just confirmed his account of Morsy's arrest to CNN by phone.

Presidential guards arrested Morsy at the guards' headquarters, El-Haddad told CNN. He described it as "house arrest." He added that Morsy's presidential team was "entirely put under arrest as well."

[Updated at 7:42 p.m. ET, 1:42 a.m. in Egypt] Morsy is "under house arrest," as are most members of the presidential team, according to a post on Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Gehad El-Haddad's Twitter account.

Reuters also reported Morsy is being held by authorities, citing the Muslim Brotherhood and a security source.

[Updated at 7:27 p.m. ET, 1:27 a.m. in Egypt] At least eight people were killed and 343 were wounded in clashes across Egypt on Wednesday, the day the Egyptian military announced it had ousted Mohamed Morsy as president, according to the state-run al-Ahram news agency, citing the Health Ministry.

[Updated at 7:07 p.m. ET, 1:07 a.m. in Egypt] Egypt's military reportedly is attempting a massive roundup of members of the Muslim Brotherhood, the Islamist movement that helped propel Morsy to power a year ago.

Arrest warrants have been issued for 300 members of the Muslim Brotherhood, and an operation to arrest them is under way, according to the state-run Ahram newspaper website on Thursday, which cited an unnamed security source.

Egyptian security forces also have arrested the Muslim Brotherhood's political party leader, Saad el-Katatni, and its deputy, Rashad Al-Bayoumi, Egypt's official MENA news agency reported Wednesday, citing an unnamed military source.

[Updated at 6:57 p.m. ET, 12:57 a.m. in Egypt] U.S. President Barack Obama, in his first public statement on Morsy's ouster, says the United States is "deeply concerned by the decision of the Egyptian armed forces to remove President Morsy and suspend the Egyptian constitution," and that he has "directed the relevant departments and agencies to review the implications under U.S. law for our assistance to the government of Egypt."

Obama also called on the Egyptian military "to move quickly and responsibly to return full authority back to a democratically elected civilian government as soon as possible through an inclusive and transparent process, and to avoid arbitrary arrests of President Morsy and his supporters."

Here is the full statement, released moments ago by the White House:

"As I have said since the Egyptian revolution, the United States supports a set of core principles, including opposition to violence, protection of universal human rights, and reform that meets the legitimate aspirations of the people. The United States does not support particular individuals or political parties, but we are committed to the democratic process and respect for the rule of law. Since the current unrest in Egypt began, we have called on all parties to work together to address the legitimate grievances of the Egyptian people, in accordance with the democratic process, and without recourse to violence or the use of force.

"The United States is monitoring the very fluid situation in Egypt, and we believe that ultimately the future of Egypt can only be determined by the Egyptian people. Nevertheless, we are deeply concerned by the decision of the Egyptian Armed Forces to remove President Morsy and suspend the Egyptian constitution. I now call on the Egyptian military to move quickly and responsibly to return full authority back to a democratically elected civilian government as soon as possible through an inclusive and transparent process, and to avoid any arbitrary arrests of President Morsy and his supporters. Given today’s developments, I have also directed the relevant departments and agencies to review the implications under U.S. law for our assistance to the government of Egypt.

"The United States continues to believe firmly that the best foundation for lasting stability in Egypt is a democratic political order with participation from all sides and all political parties secular and religious, civilian and military. During this uncertain period, we expect the military to ensure that the rights of all Egyptian men and women are protected, including the right to peaceful assembly, due process, and free and fair trials in civilian courts. Moreover, the goal of any political process should be a government that respects the rights of all people, majority and minority; that institutionalizes the checks and balances upon which democracy depends; and that places the interests of the people above party or faction. The voices of all those who have protested peacefully must be heard including those who welcomed today’s developments, and those who have supported President Morsy. In the interim, I urge all sides to avoid violence and come together to ensure the lasting restoration of Egypt’s democracy.

"No transition to democracy comes without difficulty, but in the end it must stay true to the will of the people. An honest, capable and representative government is what ordinary Egyptians seek and what they deserve. The longstanding partnership between the United States and Egypt is based on shared interests and values, and we will continue to work with the Egyptian people to ensure that Egypt’s transition to democracy succeeds."

The White House Flickr feed released this photo of Obama discussing Egypt with members of his national security team in the White House Situation Room.

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