Mohamed Morsi, 1951–, Egyptian engineer and politician, president of Egypt (2012–), grad. Cairo Univ. (B.A. 1975. M.A. 1978), Univ. of Southern California (Ph.D. 1982). He taught engineering at California State Univ., Northridge, and after returning to Egypt in 1985, at Zagaazig Univ (1985–2010). Morsi became a member of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood, and in 2000 he was elected to the Egyptian parliament, serving until 2005. In 2006 he was involved in antigovernment protests and was arrested and imprisoned for seven months; he also was arrested during the Arab Spring protests of Jan., 2011. When the Brotherhood established (2011) the Freedom and Justice party (FJP) as its political arm after Mubarak's ouster, Morsi became its head. When the FJP's preferred 2012 presidential candidate, Khairat El-Shater, was barred, Morsi ran, defeating Ahmed Shafiq after a runoff. Morsi, the first Islamist to be elected head of an Arab state and the first democratically elected president of Egypt, subsequently resigned from the Brotherhood. He lost some popular support in late 2012 when he gave himself almost unchecked power by decree (largely rescinded later) and hurried the adoption of a new constitution with mostly Islamist support.
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Publication information: Article title: Morsi, Mohamed. Encyclopedia title: The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. © 2012 The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia © 2012, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. Used with the permission of Columbia University Press. All Rights Reserved. Publisher: The Columbia University Press. Place of publication: Not available. Publication year: 2013.
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