CAIRO (AP) — Tens of thousands of Islamists streamed across a Nile River bridge toward Cairo's Tahrir Square today, threatening a showdown moments after the top leader of the Muslim Brotherhood defiantly spoke before a cheering crowd of supporters, vowing to reinstate ousted President Mohammed Morsi and end military rule.
His fiery speech, with a military helicopter hovering overhead, came soon after army troops fired on a pro-Morsi rally and one protester was killed.
The dramatic appearance by the Brotherhood's General Guide Mohammed Badie on stage before tens of thousands of supporters in Cairo was his first in public since the president's ouster. It injected a further vehemence into the campaign by Morsi's largely Islamist supporters, who have denounced the military's removal of Egypt's first freely elected president as a coup that they will not allow to stand.
Morsi "is my president and your president and the president of all Egyptians," Badie proclaimed, thrusting his arms in the air. "God make Morsi victorious and bring him back to the palace," he said in the speech, which was partially aired on state TV. "We are his soldiers we defend him with our lives."