Mohamed Morsy and 14 other Muslim Brotherhood members will stand trial next month
Morsy faces charges related to his alleged involvement in violence, state media reports
He has been kept in detention since the military removed him from office in July
The U.S. may announce it is cutting some military aid to Egypt, U.S. officials say
Ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy is slated to stand trial starting on November 4 on charges of committing and inciting violence, state media said Wednesday.
Facing trial alongside him are 14 other members of the Muslim Brotherhood movement, state news agency MENA said.
Morsy, who is backed by the Brotherhood, will be tried at Egypt’s Criminal Court on charges relating to his alleged involvement in violence that took place around the Ittihadiya Presidential Palace, the news agency said.
Egypt’s military forcibly removed Morsy from office in early July. He has been in detention since then, and a military-backed interim government has been in power.
In September, an Egyptian court banned all activities of the Muslim Brotherhood and froze its finances, drawing complaints from the international community.
The Brotherhood, an Islamist group that rose to power after the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak in 2011, has called for the reinstatement of Morsy’s government.
Egypt has been in turmoil since Morsy’s ouster, with the military and Morsy opponents battling Muslim Brotherhood members and others.
In August, hundreds of people – citizens as well as members of security forces – were killed. Many of the deaths occurred when the military used force to clear two pro-Morsy sit-in sites in Cairo. Violence raged after Morsy supporters staged demonstrations a few days later.
Each side blames the other for stoking the violence.
Morsy, who was backed by the Muslim Brotherhood’s political arm, was the country’s first democratically elected president.
But critics say he became increasingly authoritarian and forced through a conservative Islamist agenda during his year in power that alienated moderates. His ouster came after huge street protests calling for his removal.
Western nations, including the United States and Britain, have urged Egypt’s temporary government to have an inclusive political process.
Egypt’s interim foreign minister, Nabil Fahmy, told the U.N. General Assembly last month that the government is following a road map that will see nationwide elections by spring.
U.S. military aid to be reduced
The Obama administration announced Wednesday a suspension of significant military aid to Egypt.
The move, involving hundreds of millions in U.S. assistance to the Egyptian military, is the culmination of months of debate within the administration about how to respond to Morsy’s ouster.
“As a result of the review directed by President Obama, we have decided to maintain our relationship with the Egyptian government, while recalibrating our assistance to Egypt to best advance our interests,” U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in a statement.
The reduction involves a significant amount of military aid, including large-scale military hardware and cash assistance.
Aid that will continue includes funds to uphold Egypt’s obligations under its peace treaty with Israel, and money for counterterrorism and security in Sinai, where extremists have been able to set up base, Psaki said. The United States will also maintain nonmilitary funding that helps promote democracy as well as health and education programs.
CNN senior international correspondent Ben Wedeman said that in the short term, the U.S. decision could have a positive impact for the interim Egyptian government.
“Immediately, probably, the Egyptian government is going to find it’s going to gain somewhat in terms of local public opinion,” he said. “There seems to be a lot of frustration with the United States, given its role in Egypt over the last 2½ years since the revolution.”
CNN’s Jim Sciutto and Elise Labott contributed to this report.