Egyptian media is reporting that U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee head John Kerry and the U.S. Ambassador to Egypt visited the headquarters of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood on Saturday. According to a report on Ahram Online:
Sunday 11 Dec 2011 US Senator and head of the US Senate foreign relations ?committee John Kerry, along with US Ambassador to Egypt ?Anne Patterson, visited the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and ?Justice Party (FJP) Cairo headquarters on Saturday.The Muslim ?Brotherhood’s Ikhwanonline website released the news on ?Sunday, stating that the meeting had been attended by FJP ?head Mohamed Morsi, FJP deputy leader Essam El-Arian, and ?FJP Secretary-General Mohamed Saad El-Katatni. ?According to the Muslim Brotherhood website, Kerry stated that ?the FJP’s success in the first round of Egypt’s first post-Mubarak ?parliamentary polls had come as no surprise, stressing his ?respect for the choice made by the Egyptian people. ?Discussions mainly revolved around Egypt’s ongoing economic ?crisis and the international treaties to which it is signatory, the ?website noted.?Morsi reportedly assured his visitors that no major changes ?would be made to Egypt’s constitution or to current investment ?laws.He added that there were several principles that all ?Egyptian political forces agreed must be enshrined in Egypt’s ?national charter, including those concerning civil rights and ?general freedoms. However, he stressed that the section of the ?constitution related to presidential authorities would likely be ?subject to amendment.?Morsi further assured his interlocutors that – in light of Egypt’s ?central role in the Arab, Islamic and international arena – it would ?respect all international treaties to which it was signatory, adding ?that the US could play an important role in achieving political ?stability and economic recovery for several nations of the ?region.
In October, Ambassador Patterson had said that she wan’t yet comfortable meeting with the Egyptian Brotherhood, citing concerns over women’s rights and the 1978 peace treaty with Israel. In June, Reuters had reported that the U.S. would resume formal contacts with the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, citing an unidentified U.S. official. Another earlier post discussed a article by author and former Wall Street Journal reporter Ian Johnson yitled “Washington’s Secret History with the Muslim Brotherhood” in which he reviews the history of the US relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood and its relevance to the current MIdeast crisis.
Previous posts have also reported on Senator Kerry’s contacts with the Global Muslim Brotherhood including:
- A February 2009 hearing hosted by Senator Kerry that featured two leaders of the Leadership Group of the U.S.-Muslim Engagement Project, an organization whose report promotes the agenda of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.
- Attending the 2010 U.S.-Islamic World Forum which featured many leaders of the U.S. and Global Muslim Brotherhood.
- Giving the keynote speech at the April 2010 annual conference of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy (CSID), a part of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. Other keynote speakers included Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Tariq Ramadan and Anwar Ibrahim, the former Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister and close to the Global Muslim Brotherhood.