Egypt: Morsi missing from wall of past presidents shown to Turkish minister

The first democratically elected Egyptian president was noticeably absent as Cavusoglu toured the foreign ministry in Cairo.

Footage has emerged of Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu being shown a wall of portraits of Egyptian presidents on a visit to Cairo – but Egypt’s first democratically elected leader, Mohamed Morsi, has been scrubbed from history.

Cavusoglu visited Cairo on Saturday in a landmark trip after years of animosity between the two countries. Morsi was toppled in a 2013 military coup and replaced by Egypt’s current president, Abdel-Fatteh el-Sisi.

The Turkish government, which has given sanctuary to many members of the exiled Egyptian opposition, has been fiercely critical of the coup and Sisi’s subsequent crackdown and repression.

Cavusoglu, who is the most senior Turkish official to visit Egypt in a decade, said his country would upgrade its diplomatic relations with Egypt to ambassador level “as soon as possible”.

Later, Egypt’s foreign ministry published a video of Cavusoglu touring its offices. In one of the scenes, Cavusoglu appears to be standing in front of a wall of photographs that features Egypt’s presidents since the toppling of the monarchy by army officers in 1952.

Morsi, however, was noticeably absent. Instead, the picture of Adly Mansour, who served a short period as an interim president before Sisi came to power, was present.

Maged Atef, an Egyptian journalist, told Al Jazeera: “Mohamed Morsi was the president of Egypt. Whether he was good or not, this is another matter, but historically he is a legitimate president, and not putting his picture [in] is a low behaviour.”

Mohammed Hunaid, a political analyst, said: “The army had shown only the pictures of the putschists, and they were loyal to the military mind, which exclude every democratic trace.”

“They have done good by not including Morsi’s picture,” Hunaid added.

Cavusoglu said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Sisi would meet to mark the end of the estrangement between the two countries.

The meeting follows a visit by Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry to Turkey last month, in a show of solidarity after two devastating earthquakes killed more than 50,000 people across Turkey and Syria.

Relations between Ankara and Cairo have been severely strained for nearly a decade. Erdogan refused to recognise Sisi as Egypt’s legitimate leader after he led a military coup that ousted Morsi, an ally of Ankara, who died in custody in 2019.

Source: Middle East Eye


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