On 30 June 2013, marking Morsi’s one-year anniversary in office, mass protests erupted across Egypt calling for the Morsi’s resignation. On 1 July, the Egyptian Army warned that it would intervene if the protesters’ demands were not met within 48 hours. On 3 July, defence minister Abdul Fatah al-Sisi, with the support of opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei, the Grand Imam of Al Azhar Ahmed el-Tayeb and Coptic Pope Tawadros II, declared that Morsi was dismissed from office. Morsi was arrested and taken to an undisclosed location.
On the same day, the Office of the Assistant to the President on Foreign Relations & International Cooperation issued a press release stating: “For the sake of Egypt and for historical accuracy, let’s call what is happening by its real name: Military coup.”
Is this press release correct in characterizing the 3 July events as a military coup? If so, what implications would a coup have on the legitimacy of the new Egyptian government? My essay on the dismissal of Morsi from power, published by the Desmond Tutu Peace Foundation and available at this link, examines these questions in light of international law and state practice.