Mohammed Morsi, Egypt's first freely-elected president in history, today took the oath of office, marking a pivotal moment for a country wracked by over a year of political upheaval.
Morsi, standing before the nation's Supreme Constitutional Court in a ceremony broadcast live on state television, stated: "I swear by Almighty God that I will sincerely protect the republican system and that I respect the constitution and the rule of law," reported Reuters.
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"Today, the Egyptian people laid the foundation of a new life — absolute freedom, a genuine democracy and stability," he told judges, according to the Associated Press.
The new Egyptian president was sworn in before the court instead of the parliament after the legislative body was dissolved over legal issues earlier this month.
The move was quickly followed by a push for greater control by Egypt's ruling generals, ushering in legal changes that severely limited the powers to held by Morsi, the Arab world's first freely elected Muslim president, according to AP.
In a rebellious move, Morsi took the exact same oath on Friday in front of massive crowds in Cairo's Tahrir Square, the epicenter of opposition activity that ousted longtime leader Hosni Mubarak, telling them they "are the source of all authority and legitimacy," according to BBC News.
His appearance was widely seen as a warning message to the ruling Supreme Council of Armed Forces, or SCAF, who had announced that the oath would be taken in front of the Supreme Constitutional Court.
Morsi had earlier pushed to hold the ceremony in front of parliament. The fact that it took place in front of the court after all is being seen as the first of many possible future compromises with the ruling generals.
Morsi, speaking at a ceremony to mark the official transfer of power, said the military had kept its promise.
"The Egyptian people, the Arab, Islamic and entire world are witnessing a unique model, not seen before, of how power is transferred from the Egyptian military forces by the will of the people to an elected, civilian power," he said, according to Reuters. Morsi also said no one would "touch any of your rights" and promised to support the military in their national work.
The US-educated engineer is Egypt's fifth president since the monarchy fell some 60 years ago, said AP.