Sisi, a career soldier, was head of military intelligence and the youngest member of the 19-strong Supreme Council of the Armed Forces. But despite coming from the heart of the security establishment he had a reputation for being sympathetic to the Muslim Brotherhood — the reason, many Egyptians assumed, Morsi chose him for the job. Sisi is said to be a religious man, and his wife, unusually, wears the full niqab (face veil.)Apparently Sisi also allowed Islamists to attend the "apolitical" military officer's training academy.
Mohamed Beltagy, a senior Brotherhood figure, has described receiving a "brotherly" warning from the intelligence chief about an impending attack by regime thugs on demonstrators in Tahrir Square in what became known as the "battle of the camel" — one of the brutally defining moments of the revolution that overthrew Hosni Mubarak, in February 2011.
But Sisi also attracted criticism for appearing to defend the behaviour of the armed forces in detaining and beating women protestors who were subjected to strip searches and "virginity tests" and threatened with prostitution charges.
Hopefully he will remain neutral.
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