Cairo: Former Egyptian President Mohammad Morsi has been buried following his sudden death after he collapsed in a courtroom during an ongoing trial, his son confirmed on Tuesday.
Morsi’s son, Ahmed, said in a Facebook post that his father was buried in a cemetery dedicated for the Muslim Brotherhood guides in eastern Cairo’s Nasr City district after the authorities had refused to allow the former leader to be buried at the family grave in his hometown in al-Sharqiya governorate, reports Efe news. “We have washed his body at the hospital of Torah prison and read the prayers for him inside the prison’s mosque,” Ahmed wrote on Facebook, adding only members of the family were allowed to attend the burial.
Morsi, the only democratically elected president in Egypt’s history, died on Monday after spending six years in detention under harsh conditions that included near-complete solitary confinement and denial of proper medical care. Already serving a life sentence for previous convictions, the 67-year-old collapsed in court during a session of his trial for espionage and was pronounced dead on arrival at a Cairo hospital.
Morsi was one of the now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood leaders and became Egypt’s President in 2012 before being ousted by his Defence Minister, now-President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the following year. The prosecutor’s office announced on Monday an investigation had been launched to determine the causes of Morsi’s death because the reasons had not been yet indicated.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, whose Justice and Development Party has close ties with the Muslim Brotherhood, offered his condolences to Morsi’s family, describing the former president as “brother” and “martyr.” Morsi’s unexpected death came as al-Sisi was out of the country on an official visit to Belarus.
State media reported the death of Morsi, but without mentioning that he had been the country’s president. The Egyptian Ministry of Interior said the police and the armed forces had raised the level of alert and deployed troops to the country’s streets.
Morsi was a contentious figure in Egyptian politics whose rise to power exemplified a brief moment of political freedom following the 2011 revolution that ended the three-decade dictatorship of his predecessor Hosni Mubarak. However, his hold on power was weakened by general discontent.