first_imgCAIRO — Islamist Mohammed Morsi was declared the winner Sunday in the first free presidential election in Egypt’s history, closing the tumultuous first phase of a democratic transition and opening a new struggle with the still-dominant military rulers who recently stripped the presidency of most of its powers.In Tahrir Square, the birthplace of the uprising that ousted autocratic President Hosni Mubarak, joyous supporters of Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood wept and kneeled on the ground in prayer when they heard the announcement on live television. They danced, set off fireworks and released doves in the air with Morsi’s picture attached in celebrations not seen in the square since Mubarak was forced out on Feb. 11, 2011.Many are looking now to see whether Morsi will try to take on the military and wrestle back the powers they took from his office just one week ago. Thousands vowed to remain in Tahrir to demand that the ruling generals reverse their decision.In his first televised speech, the 60-year old U.S.-trained engineer called on Egyptians to unite and tried to reassure minority Christians, who mostly backed Morsi’s rival Ahmed Shafiq because they feared Islamic rule.He said he carries “a message of peace” to the world and pledged to preserve Egypt’s international accords, a reference to the peace deal with Israel.last_img

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