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Cairo University was established in 1908 as Egypt’s first seat of secular learning but became a stronghold of Islamist student groups in the 1970s. Many of their leaders have gone on to become today’s stalwarts of the Brotherhood, Morsi included.

The base, also known as Huckstep camp, houses a military court in which Brotherhood leaders were tried during the Mubarak years.

Hundreds of soldiers and policemen guarded the Supreme Constitutional Court building as Morsi arrived in a small motorcade. Only several hundred supporters gathered outside the court to cheer the new president and, in a departure from the presidential pomp of the Mubarak era, traffic was only briefly halted to allow his motorcade through on the usually busy road linking the city center to southern suburbs.

In another sign of the change of style, Morsi began his address at Cairo University with an apology to students whose final exams had to be postponed to allow the ceremony to be held at the main campus.