Iranian media is reporting that that Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood is considering negotiations with a faction of its younger members in order to avoid a splitting of the group. According to the report
Egypt’s largest opposition group, the Muslim Brotherhood, has suggested negotiations with a faction of young members in an attempt to bridge an internal schism. According to Press TV quoting the official Arabic website of the Muslim Brotherhood, Islamonline, senior members of the Muslim Brotherhood Monday called on Mohamed Kamal Farag, the coordinator of a youth wing of the group, to meet and create a plan to resolve existing conflicts and restore unity reported. Meanwhile, Farag has welcomed the recent move by the veterans of the Muslim Brotherhood. He also underlined that the planned March 17 revolt could be postponed if the party leadership heeds their demands.
An Egyptian newspaper had reported earlier that a group of 2000 young Muslim Brothers was planning to stage a “revolt” against the group’s leadership. According to that report in Al Masry Al-Youm:
A group of roughly 2000 young members of the Muslim Brotherhood say they are planning to stage a “revolt” against the group’s authoritative Guidance Bureau and Shura Council on 17 March to demand the dissolution of the two governing bodies. Young members say there is no reason why the group should work in secrecy considering the “wave of freedom” witnessed by Egypt following the 25 January uprising, which led to the ouster of Egypt’s longstanding president Hosni Mubarak on 11 February. Young members say the group’s role should be restricted to preaching the teachings of Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna. They also demand the formation of a transitional committee mandated with directing the group’s affairs until a new board can be elected. They have suggested that the proposed committee be headed by Mohamed Mahdi Akef, the group’s previous general guide. Young members of the group are threatening to hold an open-ended sit-in if their demands are not met. They said they expected organizational “change” to take place within the Muslim Brotherhood by April, when they would begin taking steps aimed at “modernizing” the group and its activities.
Translated from the Arabic Edition.
The reported choice of Akef to head the proposed transitional committee raises questions about the true nature of this youth group given that Akef could in no sense himself be considered a proponent of reform.
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.