World Bulletin/News Desk
A leaked audio recording purportedly by Egyptian army chief and Defense Minister Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi revealed that ousted President Mohamed Morsi had been held at the Republican Guards Club in eastern Cairo when deadly clashes broke out outside the facility on July 8.
The Rassd News Network released the audio recording of comments said to have been made by al-Sisi during a recent interview with Yasser Rizk, editor-in-chief of prominent Egyptian daily Al-Masry al-Youm.
In the leaked recording, the military chief allegedly says that Morsi had been held at the military facility during clashes between his supporters -- who suspected he was being held there -- and army forces manning the facility.
He was relocated to another facility immediately following the clashes, al-Sisi allegedly says in answer to a question as to why the decision to disperse protests outside the club was taken faster than that to disperse the Rabaa al-Adawiya protest camp a few hundred meters away -- which eventually happened on August 14.
The military chief accused certain "elements" among the pro-Morsi protesters of firing on the troops manning the facility, leading to "unjustified losses".
The clashes outside the Republican Guards club left over 50 protesters dead and many more injured amid conflicting reports as to which side precipitated the violence.
The Muslim Brotherhood, the group from which Morsi hails, has accused security forces of opening fire on its supporters as the latter performed dawn prayers.
But the army and police insist that protesters attacked the vicinity of the Republican Guards compound and the troops stationed nearby, killing two police officers and one army officer.
Morsi, Egypt's first democratically elected leader, was removed from power on July 3 by the formidable military establishment after mass protests against his presidency.
He has not been seen in public since.
The authenticity of the recording attributed to al-Sisi could not be verified and there was no immediate comment on the tape by Egyptian authorities.
It was the fourth such leaked recording to be released by the online news network, which says the recordings are off-the-record portions of an interview with al-Sisi published earlier this month to coincide with the anniversary Egypt's October 6, 1973 victory over Israel.
The newspaper, for its part, claims the recordings are "fabricated."Last Mod: 26 Ekim 2013, 13:03