UPDATES WITH FUNERAL PRAYER IN ABSENTIA IN AFGHANISTAN, SOUTH AFRICA
By Mahmoud Barakat and Zehra Nur Duz
ANKARA (AA) - The international community mourned the martyrdom of Mohamed Morsi, Egypt’s first democratically-elected president, who died Monday during a court appearance to face charges many believed were politically motivated.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan wished God's mercy for Morsi, whom he called "a martyr who died struggling for his cause", saying history will never forget the tyrants who caused his martyrdom.
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that Morsi will be remembered as "an exceptional person in his country's struggle for democracy".
“In front of Allah, my father and we shall unite,” Morsi's son, Ahmed, said in a Facebook post.
Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani also mourned Morsi’s demise. "We received with deep sorrow the news of the sudden death of former President Mohamed Morsi," he said.
He offered condolences to Morsi's family and the Egyptian people.
In a statement, Iran’s Foreign Ministry also voiced “sorrow” and “regret” over the news of the passing of Morsi.
"While respecting the viewpoints of the great and brave Egyptian nation, the Islamic Republic of Iran condoles with the people as well as Morsi’s family, survivors and fans over his demise, and wishes divine blessing and mercy for him, patience and divine reward for survivors, and success for the great Egyptian nation," the statement said.
- ‘Sad news’
Shireen Mazari, Pakistan's minister for human rights, also expressed grief over Morsi’s demise.
"Indeed - sad news. What hope there was and how tragically it all ended. RIP," Mazari said in a Twitter post.
"Morsi's incarceration&death symbolize the tragedy of democracy struggling under shadow of Uncle Sam. What promise the Arab Spring held & how it was destroyed - is similar to what happened to Allende & other democratic nationalist forces around the world inimical to the powerful!" she added.
In addition, Malaysian Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah also expressed sorrow over "sudden passing" of Morsi.
"During his tenure as president, Mr Morsi showed courage and moral fortitude in his attempt to lead Egypt away from decades of authoritarian rule and establish true democracy there," Abdullah said.
“Morsi’s contribution to justice and democracy in Egypt will be remembered,” he added.
Prominent Muslim scholar Yusuf al-Qaradawi said Morsi suffered a lot while languishing in prison.
Morsi "died with patience over his suffering in his jail," al-Qaradawi said, praying to God to accept him as a martyr.
The Tunisian Ennahda Movement said it had received the news with great sadness and shock and extended condolences to Morsi's family and the Egyptian people.
The movement expressed hope that "the painful incident would be a reason to put an end to the suffering of thousands of political prisoners in Egypt" and for starting dialogue for a new democratic political life.
- ‘Coup authorities’ held responsible
Jordan's Muslim Brotherhood said it held "the coup authorities in Egypt responsible for Morsi's death".
The group also pinned the blame on "the crimes of the coup" in Egypt.
The Palestinian Hamas group mourned the death of Morsi and hailed his efforts in serving the Palestinian cause.
"Morsi engaged in a long struggle for Egypt, its people and the nation's issues, foremost of which is the Palestinian cause,” it said.
He also made great efforts in defending Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque as a member of Egypt’s parliament, it added, offering condolences to Egypt, its people and his family.
At Al-Aqsa Mosque, dozens of Palestinians offered funeral prayers for the late leader.
In Libya, Mohamed al-Amari, a member of the UN-recognized Libyan Presidential Council, described Morsi as a martyr, adding he had "set an example for his patience, steadfastness and adherence to his principles".
On his Facebook page, Amari expressed his condolences to Morsi’s family, the "free people of Egypt" and "liberation revolutions" in all Arab countries.
- ‘Oppressed legitimate president’
Abderrazak Makri, the leader of Algeria's largest Islamic party, the Movement for the Society of Peace, mourned the "oppressed legitimate Egyptian president".
"On behalf of the movement's institutions and activists, I extend our sincere condolences to the family of the legitimate Egyptian president, who was overthrown, to his brothers in the Freedom and Justice Party and to the Egyptian people," he said.
Sudan's Popular Congress Party expressed condolences to the "Arab and Islamic nation and the Egyptian people" over Morsi's martyrdom. It stressed that Morsi spent "six years of imprisonment and was deprived of his basic and human rights".
Mohamed Mahsoub, who served as minister of state for parliamentary affairs during Morsi's presidency, said "we are facing a new murder case: the murder of the only president elected by the Egyptian people in their history".
He said it was the murder of freedom of choice in order to “keep Egypt's future bound to the will of a tyrant or the decision of a dictator".
Human Rights Watch also commented on Morsi's martyrdom, saying it was “predictable".
"Morsi's death is terrible but entirely predictable, given gov't failure to allow him adequate medical care," Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of the organization’s Middle East and North Africa Division, said on Twitter.
In South Africa, scores of Egyptian nationals gathered in a Johannesburg protest over the demise of Morsi.
“We are here to show support to the family of late Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi and also strongly condemn how the Egyptian government treated him while in custody,” Hussein Abbasi, leader of the Egyptian community in South Africa, said at the protest.
“We want the international community to investigate circumstances surrounding President Morsi’s death. We are really pained by his death and treatment for Egyptian authorities,” protest organizer Ahmed Jamal told Anadolu Agency.
Separately, a massive funeral prayer in absentia for the late leader was held at the Mayfair mosque, Jamal added.
Mohamed Amir, another protester, said: “We are sending a message to… Sisi to stop persecuting members of the opposition. We want all democratic nations of the world to support the people of Egypt."
In Jammu and Kashmir in India, a Muslim-majority region, over a hundred people, including students and faculty members at Kashmir University in Srinagar offered funeral prayers in absentia for Morsi.
Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Kashmir’s top cleric, expressed grief over Morsi’s death.
“My condolences to the family of Dr Mohammad Morsi and the people of Egypt on his death in detention,” he added.
In Afghanistan, hundreds of people gathered to attend funeral prayers in absentia for Morsi and condolence sessions.
The main funeral prayers, organized by the local Jamiat-e-Eslah (Society for Reform), were offered at the historic Eidgah Mosque in the capital Kabul in the afternoon.
- Egypt’s first democratically-elected president
A leading member of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood group, Morsi won Egypt's first free presidential election in 2012.
After only one year in office, however, he was ousted and imprisoned in a bloody military coup led by Egypt's then defense minister and current president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
At the time of his death, Morsi faced a host of legal charges, which he, along with numerous human rights groups and independent observers, said were politically motivated.
Hamdeen Sabahi, a former candidate in Egypt’s presidential elections, also conveyed his condolences.
“I ask God to welcome him in his vast paradise, accept his kindness, ignore his mistakes, and give patience to his loved ones.”
* Zahid Rafiq in Jammu and Kashmir, Shadi Khan Saif in Afghanistan, and Hassan Isilow in South Africa contributed to this story.