Throughout Morsi’s year in office, many of his opponents accused the United States of backing his administration. Washington often underlined that it was dealing with Morsi as the country’s elected leader. Before the wave of anti-Morsi protests began on June 30, U.S. Ambassador to Egypt Anne Patterson said in a speech that she was “deeply skeptical” protests would be fruitful and defended U.S. relations with Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood as necessary because the group is part of the democratically elected Egyptian government.
Since Morsi’s removal Wednesday, it has tread carefully, expressing concern without outright calling the army’s move a coup or denouncing Morsi’s ouster. On Saturday, the White House said in a statement that it rejects “false claims propagated by some in Egypt that we are working with specific political parties or movements to dictate how Egypt’s transition should proceed,” saying it is committed to Egyptians’ aspirations for democracy.
“The West, the USA and Great Britain are hypocrites,” said protester Magdi Iskandar, 59-year-businessman. “There is a big conspiracy against Egypt. They don’t want us to have true democracy.”
Many carried posters of the army’s chief, Defense Minister Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.
“Come out el-Sissi, and teach the Brotherhood a lesson,” protesters chanted.
In the prime minister negotiations, 48-year-old liberal economist Ziad Bahaa-Eldin, a longtime critic of the Brotherhood and reform advocate, emerged as a leading candidate, a spokesman of the interim president told Egypt’s ONTV.
Speaking to The Associated Press, Bahaa-Eldin confirmed his name was put forward, saying he “is still thinking about it.”
His name emerged after a ultraconservate Salafi party blocked a move Saturday by liberal and secular factions to appoint the country’s most prominent reform figure, Mohammed ElBaradei. Under the compromise, ElBaradei would be named vice president.