Egyptian media is reporting that the International Organization of the Muslim Brotherhood plans to take legal action against the Egyptian regime before the International Court of Justice to aquit itself of money laundering charges. According to a report in an Egyptian newspaper:
The International Organization of the Muslim Brotherhood said it will take legal action against the Egyptian regime before the International Court of Justice in order to acquit the group of money laundering charges. The Egyptian State Security Court on Saturday sentenced five Brotherhood members to between five and eight years in prison. “I have appealed my sentence before a British court, which will hear my case next month,” said Ibrahim Mounir, the group’s representative in Europe, who was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment. Speaking from London, Mounir said it was difficult to launder money from the UK due to the UK’s strict regulations on money transfers. From his residence in Yemen, Wagdy Ghoneim, who was also sentenced by the Egyptian court, said, “The court is incompetent and has no jurisdiction to pass any sentence on me.” “We were raising donations for the group, that’s all,” he added. “And the security services of the countries from which we collect those donations would have arrested us had we been doing anything wrong.]
Previous posts have discussed the announcement and background to the investigation. Other posts have provided background on Ibrahim Mounir, a Muslim Brotherhood leader living in exile in the UK, and on Wagdy Goneim, an Egyptian cleric known for his anti-Semitic speeches.
The International Organization of the Muslim Brotherhood (IMB) can be considered to be the international leadership of the global Muslim Brotherhood most closely tied to the Egyptian organization. In 2004, a London-based Arabic newspaper identified further members of the International Organization:
The international organization of the Muslim Brotherhood is an assembly of all national Brotherhood organizations, but its higher leadership is in the hands of the Egyptian organization represented in the guide and the Guidance Bureau. There are other leaders that help run the international organization, such as the Syrian Hasan Huwaydi, who is considered the third deputy of the guide, in addition to Faisal Mawlawi, leader of the Lebanese Brotherhood, Abd-Majid-Dhunaybat, controller-general of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, and the Tunisian Rashid al-Ghannushi. The London-based Egyptian, Ibrahim Munir, takes care of coordination among the organization’s members in Europe. The leaders of the international organization have held their meetings with Egypt’s Brotherhood leaders in several European countries, as it is impossible to organize such meetings in Egypt, where the group is banned and targeted by security authorities.
It should be noted that the Muslim Brotherhood today has become a global network and that the Egyptian mother branch is not necessarily the most important part of the movement. Sheikh Youssef Qaradawi, close to Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, is often referred to by the GMBDW as the most important leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood, an acknowledgement of his role as the de facto spiritual leader of the movement. In 2004, Qaradawi turned down the offer to lead the Egyptian Brotherhood after the death of the Supreme Guide stating only that
..he had consciously decided not to limit his scope of manoeuvre by tying himself ‘any movement which might constrain my actions, even if this is the Muslim Brotherhood under whose umbrella I grew and which I so defended…Would I, at the age of 77, accept what I turned down when I was 49?’
Since some of the leaders of the IMB are also closely tied to Qaradawi, Faisal Mawlawi for example, there may be overlap between the leadership structures of the IMB and Global Muslim Brotherhood but further research is need to clarify these relationships. A previous post details what is currently known about the IMB.