Mohamed Morsi [aka Mohammad Mohamed Morsy al-Ayat / Mohammed Mursi] wss born on August 8, 1951 at Sharkia, Egypt, the talented son of a peasant farmer. He received a Bachelor's and Master's Degree in Engineering from Cairo University in 1975 and 1978, and obtained a Ph.D. in Engineering from the University of Southern California in 1982. He specialized in research in the fields of industry and NASA development studies to upgrade the engine of the space shuttle in the early 1980s. Morsy was an Assistant Professor at California State University, Northridge from 1982 to 1985, and a Professor at Zaqaziq University from 1985 to 2010, where he served as head of the engineering department.
Morsi became ideologically attracted to the politics of the Muslim Brotherhood in the mid-1970s, becoming an official member in 1979. He joined the group’s religious department in 1979. In 1992, he became a member of the group’s newly-formed political department. In 1995, he became a member of the Brotherhood’s Guidance Bureau, the group's highest decision-making body. Morsy was chosen as a member of the Zionist resistance committee in Sharqeya Governorate and a member of the International Conference for political parties and powers and professional syndicates. He is also a funder member in the Egyptian committee for combating the Zionist project.
He served as a Member of Parliament from 2000 to 2005, during which time he presented the most famous inquest in the parliament related to the Upper Egypt train accident; on the next day government papers praised this action. He was selected globally as the best parliament member during the period 2000-2005. Morsi spent seven months in jail after being arrested in May 2006 – along with dozens of other Brotherhood members – for supporting a group of reformist judges who had staged demonstrations against the fraud that had accompanied the 2005 elections.
He was a co-founder of the National Front for Change (‘Kefaya’) along with former prime minister Aziz Sedki in 2004, and also participated in the establishment of the National Assembly for Change in 2010 with reform activist Mohamed ElBaradei. In the final months of the Mubarak regime, Morsi co-directed a Brotherhood campaign – dubbed the Political Parties Dialogue Initiative – aimed at opening dialogue with various political opposition parties and movements. Morsy was a member of the Guidance Bureau of the Muslim Brotherhood until the foundation of the Freedom and Justice Party in 2011, and was President of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) since April 30, 2011. He was elected by the MB's Guidance Office to be the first president of the new party.
On 17 April 2012 Egypt's electoral commission confirmed the disqualification of 10 candidates from next month's presidential election, ending the candidacies of Muslim Brotherhood chief strategist Khairat el-Shater. The Islamist movement still had a back-up candidate in the presidential race - Mohammed Morsi [Mohammed Mohammed Morsi Essa Al-Ayyat], Chairman of Egypt’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) — the political party of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is the largest party in the Egyptian Parliament.
Morsy was elected President of the Arab Republic of Egypt on June 24, 2012 with 51.73 % as the first elected president after the January 25 Revolution. President Mohamed Morsy took the constitutional oath on June 30,2012 before the Supreme Constitutional Court as the first elected president of the Arab Republic of Egypt after the January 25th Revolution.
Morsi's brand of conservative Islam makes him popular with Brotherhood members and sympathisers who would have voted for conservatives such as El-Shater or Salafist candidate Hazem Abu Ismail – both of whom were ultimately disqualified from the race. He was particularly popular with Islamist voters, who consider renegade Islamist candidate Abdel-Moneim Abul-Fotouh too liberal on social issues. Critics see him as a Brotherhood functionary who shows little charisma, a quality also conspicuously lacking in his predecessor Mubarak whose dour approach contrasted with the political risk-taker Anwar Sadat and Gamal Abdel Nasser whose eloquence gripped the Arab world.
Morsi visited Iran on 30 August 2012, the first visit by an Egyptian leader since Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution. Morsi's trip broke an alienation dating back to Egypt's recognition of Israel and its welcome to Iran's deposed Shah. The visit was pegged to the technical point of handing over the rotating leadership of the Non-Aligned Movement. And there was no word of when and if full diplomatic relations will be restored. But the symbolism concerned countries trying to isolate Iran - in particular, Egypt's long-time ally the United States.
In the five months since his election, Morsi has tried to present a reinvigorated Egypt to the world, traveling around the region and as far afield as China and the United States. With his mediation in the Israeli Gaza aerial conflict, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi faced a high profile test of his presidency. Egypt's first Islamist president had been carrying out a delicate balancing act, showing solidarity with the Muslim Brotherhood's religious and political offspring, the Hamas leaders of Gaza, while portraying himself as a reliable broker for Israel and the West.
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