The Turkish newspaper Today’s Zaman has posted an article titled “Muslim Brotherhood back in Iraq” that looks at efforts by the Iraqi Muslim Brotherhood to create an official body separate from the Iraqi Islamic Party (IIP). The article begins:
February 2013 The turmoil in Iraq is not settling down. Sunni Arabs continuously hold protests, arguing that they have become second-class citizens in Iraq and that they have been removed from the political, social and economic life of Iraq. The reactionary and unplanned demonstrations have turned into an organized resistance. In present day Iraq, the Iraqi Muslim Brotherhood is trying to create an official body separate from the Iraqi Islamic Party established by the Sunni Arabs. Since 2003, the Iraqi Islamic Party has only been involved in politics. For this reason, the Muslim Brotherhood filed an official application in order to become eligible for non-political activities in Iraq. The Brotherhood has already been organized in all the provinces of Iraq including Mosul, Anbar, Basra and the Azamiye district of Baghdad. A 78-member of Advisory Council has been set up, an executive body of five members chosen from the council membership, and a president was elected. Within the Iraqi Kurdish Regional Administration, the Muslim Brotherhood has a separate organizational structure; the Kurdistan Islamic Union (Yekgirtu) is an extension of the Iraqi Muslim Brotherhood. They want to open an office in Istanbul as well. The Iraqi Muslim Brotherhood does not have organizational ties with the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood. It is obvious, however, that they hold similar goals and views on a variety of matters. The Muslim Brotherhood that has been active in Iraq since 1941 is one of the oldest organizations in the country. Muhammad Mahmud Sayyaf, who was from Iraq and studied in Egypt, became the first leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in Iraq. In the 1950s, the Brotherhood then opened new branches in Karbala, Najaf, Divaniye and other predominantly Shiite areas, as well. In 1949 and 1950, the Brotherhood sought official recognition, however, the request was denied because it was considered an extension of a foreign organization. In 1954, the Iraqi Islam Association, created by the Muslim Brotherhood under the leadership of Emcet Izzavi was shut down.”
Read the rest here.
The Iraqi Islamic Party (IIP) has always been known to be strongly tied to the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. According to a profile posted on globalsecurity.org:
The Iraqi Islamic Party (IIP), established in 1960, is the major Sunni political organization in the country …The party was suppressed during the regime of former President Saddam Hussein. Many of its members were forced to flee the country. The party returned to public life after coalition forces occupied Iraq. The IIP seeks to preserve the leading role Sunnis have had in running the country starting with the establishment of the modern Iraqi state in the beginning of the 20th century. The Iraqi Islamic Party was formed as an Iraqi Muslim Brotherhood organization, and conducted underground work during the Baathist period. Thee party does not considers itself a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood Group, established in Egypt in 1994, nor a political front for it in Iraq. The Iraqi Islamic Party acknowledges strong ties to the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood through political and intellectual alliances.
A post from last September reported that a delegation openly identifying itself as the Iraqi Muslim Brotherhood visited the party headquarters of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood political party where they met with its leaders. A post from August reported on the election of Ayad Al-Samarra’i as the head of the Iraqi Islamic Party (IIP). As discussed in a post from May 2009, Usama al-Tikriti had previously been chosen to head the IIP. Knowledgable sources report that Usama Al-Tikriti has also been serving as the General Guide (leader) for the Muslim Brotherhood in Iraq and is likely to retain that position. Usama al-Tikriti is also the father of Anas al-Tikriti, the former leader of the Muslim Association of Britain (MAB) and now a leader in the British Muslim Initiative (BMI), both part of the U.K. Muslim Brotherhood.
Al-Monitor recently posted an article titled “Iraq Protests Present Muslim Brotherhood With Opportunity ” that looked at the prospects for the Muslim Brotherhood in Iraq.