A full military coup has taken place in Egypt tonight.
Armored cars, tanks and troops deployed in the Egyptian capital on Wednesday, and advisers said they had lost contact with President Mohammed Morsi in what they described as a military coup. In a scene reminiscent of the earliest days of the Arab Spring, tens of thousands of Egyptians who had demanded the president’s ouster staged a jubilant celebration in Tahrir Square — dancing, cheering and setting off fireworks.
Earlier in the day, the president and the military each swore to fight to the death for control of the country, and a military deadline for Morsi to step aside came and went with no statement from the president. “We swear to God to sacrifice with our blood for Egypt and its people against any terrorist, extremist or ignoramus,” the military said in a statement. “Long live Egypt and its proud people.”
Egypt’s ruling Freedom and Justice Party has said that “a full military coup” was under way to remove President Mohamed Morsi from power, after an army deadline urging him to meet the protesters’ demands expired. Gehad El-Haddad, a spokesperson for the Muslim Brotherhood and senior adviser to the Freedom and Justice Party, said on Wednesday that armoured personnel carriers were on the move around the outskirts of Cairo and that “some high ranking members of the Brotherhood have been arrested”.
Haddad also told Al Jazeera that communication with Morsi was cut off, saying that he could not confirm nor deny whether the president was moved from the Republican Guard Headquarters in the capital. The statement came as hundreds of thousands of anti-government portesters rallied across the city, flooding Tahrir Square in the centre, the main hub of the opposition coalition movement.
The Egyptian Army is carrying out a “full military coup” and the army has placed a travel ban on the country’s embattled President Mohamed Morsi, officials said. The action came at the end of the 48 hours Egypt’s military gave Morsi two days ago to answer the demands of protesters who have filled the country’s streets in recent days. The streets of Cairo was jammed again today, this time with competing throngs of pro- and anti-Morsi protesters.
In a statement posted on the Egyptian Presidency Facebook page, Essam El-Haddad, Egypt’s national security adviser called the on-going situation “a full military coup,” and warned that it will only lead to more violence. “Today only one thing matters. In this day and age no military coup can succeed in the face of sizeable popular force without considerable bloodshed. Who among you is ready to shoulder that blame?” he wrote.
UPDATE: AP has news on Morsi.