The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood website is reporting on comments by a member of its leadership that the Brotherhood’s planned new party would be “completely independent” of its leadership structure but unlike previous statements, refused to deny that the group would field a Presidential candidate. According to the report:
Dr. Saad Ketatni, member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Executive Bureau, said: «The Muslim Brotherhood’s political party ‘Freedom and Justice’ would be completely independent, not binding on the MB’s Executive Bureau and will be subject to the laws regulating the licensing of opposition parties because this is unauthorized by law on political parties”. Ketatani added “If the party is approval ahead of the parliamentary elections, the group will be able to nominate its candidates”, indicating that an agreement has so far been reached on the party’s name and relevant institutions within the group are working on the final version of the party’s upcoming program, regulations and policies. The group is exploring the possibility that it will be an NGO in order to have legitimacy. Ketatni said: “Institutions within the group will examine the appropriate way after the constitutional amendments because we are still in transition, and every day we are confronted with new developments”. In response to a question about whether the new party seeks to field a candidate for the presidency, he said: “It is so difficult to make a decision now, and when we finalize the party’s foundation, its members will have the final word”. A leading MB figure Dr. Mohammed Beltagy said: “Party membership will be open to all Egyptians who will accept its platform and tendencies and there will be no exceptions because it will be centered on freedom and justice”. “The party will not be a substitute to the movement but will adopt and serve its ideology,” Beltagy said, adding that the group has charitable, educational and social projects which Egyptian society needs. The party, as is customary, will work within a framework of political parties under its mechanisms. Consequently, the group’s work will remain in place even if the party is established. He pointed out that the MB’s legal and regulatory situation will take place in the next phase.
A previous post discussed the announcement by the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood that it planned to form a new political party.
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