Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood To Participate In Elections


Global media is widely reporting that the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood wii take part in upcoming parliamentary elections. According to an AP report:

Egypt’s largest opposition group, the Muslim Brotherhood, will contest upcoming parliamentary elections despite calls for a boycott, a senior official with the group said Thursday. The decision, which comes nearly a month after a leading democracy advocate called on parties to skip the polls, highlights the fractured state of Egypt’s opposition. But the Brotherhood’s choice to field candidates in the November polls was widely expected. The organization traditionally views elections as its best chance to demonstrate its strength to its supporters and pressure the regime of President Hosni Mubarak, who has ruled for nearly 30 years. “We choose to be positive and run in the elections,” said Brotherhood lawmaker Saad el-Katatni, the head of the group’s caucus in parliament. He said the decision stemmed in part from the opposition’s inability to present a common front. “If there was unity, we would have joined them (in a boycott) to embarrass the regime,” he said. He added that it was too early to say how many candidates the Brotherhood will field. Egypt’s three main political parties — the liberal Al-Wafd, the pan-Arab Nasserist, and the leftist opposition Tagammu — have also said that they will contest the elections. That leaves former U.N. nuclear chief Mohamed ElBaradei, who initiated the call to stay away from the polls, his supporters and two small parties alone in their boycott….The Brotherhood won 88 seats in Egypt’s current 454-seat parliament — a surprisingly strong result that was widely viewed as a victory. Its candidates run as independents because the group is officially banned by the government. But government officials have hinted this year that they will be less tolerant of the Islamic group’s candidates and their campaigning.

The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood can be considered to be the “mother” organization of what is referred to in these pages as the Global Muslim Brotherhood which developed as Muslim Brothers fleeing Egypt settled in Europe and the United States, as well as other places, throughout the years. The global network has since eclipsed the Egyptian organization as evidenced by global Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi’s decision to turn down the leadership of the Egyptian organization when it was offered to him in 2004.

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