After rising from obscurity to become Egypt’s first and only democratically elected president, Morsi spent his final years jailed in poor conditions.

Egypt’s first democratically elected president, Mohamed Morsi, died during a court session on Monday.

"He was speaking before the judge for 20 minutes, then became very animated and fainted. He was quickly rushed to the hospital where he later died," a judicial source said.

Mohamed Morsi was born in 1951 in the village of El Adwah in the Nile Delta province. 

He studied engineering at Cairo University in the 1970s and then moved to the US to complete a PhD. He continued his career at Zagazig University, heading the engineering department there.

A senior member of the Muslim Brotherhood, he was arrested during the Egyptian Revolution of 2011 but escaped prison with fellow members just two days later.

His political career began after the overthrow of former President Hosni Mubarak on February 11.

Morsi headed the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, and later in 2012 stepped in as the organisations preferred candidate for president after its initial choice, Khairat al Shater, was barred from running.

Egypt’s first free election was held in two rounds. The first on May 23 and May 24, during which Morsi won a total of 25 percent of the vote to Ahmed Shafik’s 24.

In the run-off election, Morsi narrowly won with 52 percent of votes to Shafik’s 48.

His year in power was tumultuous and eventful.

Morsi dismissed the defence minister that ruled Egypt after Mubarak, Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, and army chief of staff, Sami Anan.

His eventual nemesis, General Abdel Fattah el Sisi, was made defence minister in Tantawi’s place.

Morsi’s rule was scarred by frequent opposition demonstrations, which ultimately culminated in the June 30, 2013 protests, which demanded his resignation.

Sisi gave a 48 hour ultimatum to Morsi ostensibly to resolve the situation and at its end formally initiated a military coup.

Morsi was first kept under guard and then imprisoned with tens of thousands of other opponents of the new military regime.

In widely criticised trials since his arrest, the former president has faced charges related to his escape from prison, the killing of protesters, and spying for foreign powers.

Rights groups, such as Human Rights Watch, say there was no evidence to support the accusations and that the judicial authorities were biased against Morsi.

Morsi was nevertheless sentenced to death along with 105 others by an Egyptian court on 16 May 2015. However, the court of cassation overturned the death sentence and ordered a retrial.

The former Egyptian leader remained in custody throughout, continuing to suffer from the same poor treatment until his death on Monday June 17, exactly seven years after his election as president.

Source: TRT World