‘Morsi tried to split military, dismiss defense minister’

July 8, 2013 00:38

Egyptian paper El-Watan reports Morsi tried to undermine General Fattah al-Sisi, contacted ex-army commander Tantawi.

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Egypt'sChief of Staff Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (R) and Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi in April, 2013.

General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Morsi370. (photo credit:Reuters)

The Egyptian Republican Guard refused to implement a plan by former president Mohamed Morsi to remove key members of the military leadership, according to military sources quoted by the Egyptian El-Watan newspaper on Sunday.

The isolated president tried to listen in on top leaders of the armed forces, and in particular the commander of the Republican Guard, who he wanted to dismiss.

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Egyptian intelligence was monitoring phone calls between members of the Muslim Brotherhood leadership and the presidential palace, revealing a plan to remove commander of the Egyptian armed forces and Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

Egyptian intelligence informed Sisi of what was observed and he ordered that the matter be kept secret.

The sources also said that the isolated president tried to create a split within the army by contacting military leaders, without Sisi’s knowledge, to find someone to replace him.

Morsi even resorted to contacting ex-army commander Mohamed Hussein Tantawi to smooth over the clash with Sisi, but he did not comply.

As the mass anti-Morsi protest of June 30 approached, Morsi asked the head of the Republican Guard to arrest prominent figures: Judges, members of the media and members of the opposition – but he refused to carry out the orders.

The report stated that Sisi felt that a dangerous situation was approaching and feared increased violence on the street and held a meeting with military leaders to coordinate his moves. Part of the plan was to secure the Sinai and prevent the infiltration of jihadist elements.

In addition, the advisor of the president, Essam al-Haddad, told the US to suspend military aid, according to the report.

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