Islamists heckle Popular Current leader Sabbahi at Shubra university

Ahram Online, Monday 22 Apr 2013

Nasserist Hamdeen Sabbahi is greeted with jeers by Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated students who accuse him of joining 'counter-revolution' against Egypt's elected president; the veteran politician holds his ground

Sabbahi attempts to respond to angry protesters (Photo: Snapshot Al-Jazeera)

A number of Egyptian students, reportedly members of the Muslim Brotherhood, shouted chants against Nasserist politician Hamdeen Sabbahi on Monday during a panel discussion at Shubra Engineering Faculty, accusing the former presidential candidate of betraying Egypt's 25 January Revolution.

Students held banners aloft decrying both Sabbahi and the opposition National Salvation Front (NSF) umbrella group of which he – along with several other prominent opposition figures – is a founding member. Other students held banners asking: 'Where's the revolution, Hamdeen?'

Sabbahi is an outspoken critic of President Mohamed Morsi, who hails from the Muslim Brotherhood. Sabbahi and his political allies in the NSF accuse both Morsi and the Islamist group of pursuing "dictatorial" policies and seeking to take control of key state institutions.

Many Islamist parties and groups, for their part, including the Brotherhood, accuse the NSF and its affiliated parties of taking part in a "counter-revolution" against President Morsi in conjunction with "remnants" of the Mubarak regime.

In an attempt to calm the angry crowd, Sabbahi asked critics to come to the podium and pose their questions.

One Brotherhood member in attendance asked him about his stance on a recent trip by a Nasserist Party delegation to Syrian leader Bashar Al-Assad.

Sabbahi, for his part, stressed that his own leftist Popular Current movement had not been part of the visit and that he supports the struggle of the Syrian people against their dictator Assad.

Anti-Brotherhood chants and limited scuffles between students erupted following Sabbahi's departure from the event.

Sabbahi came in third place – behind the Brotherhood's Morsi and Mubarak-era minister Ahmed Shafiq – in Egypt's first-ever free presidential election last summer.

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