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Egypt’s MB Sets Roadmap for US
"The MB’s "no-rush" approach is due to historical, political and national reasons," El-Erian said.  CAIRO, December 22, 2005 (IslamOnline.net) – Citing doubts over US real intentions, in addition to historical, political and other reasons, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood (MB) has expressed its own stance not to rush getting engaged in dialogue with Washington soon. "MB stron
Friday, December 23,2005 00:00
by (IslamOnline.net & News Agencies)

"The MB’s "no-rush" approach is due to historical, political and national reasons," El-Erian said.

 
CAIRO, December 22, 2005 (IslamOnline.net) – Citing doubts over US real intentions, in addition to historical, political and other reasons, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood (MB) has expressed its own stance not to rush getting engaged in dialogue with Washington soon.

"MB strongly doubts the US administration’s intentions of holding the dialogue since there is a clear US policy to use Arab opposition against the ruling regimes as the case in Iraq and now in Syria," Dr Essam El-Erian, a senior leader of the MB, wrote in a lengthy article on the issue published on the MB’s Web site Wednesday, December 21.

The officially banned but tolerated Muslim Brotherhood won 88 seats in Egypt’s parliamentary elections, six times the number of MPs it had in the outgoing chamber.

By clinching almost 20 percent of parliamentary seats, the group made the most serious dent in President Hosni Mubarak’s 24-year-old autocratic rule.

Earlier December, the group’s deputy head said the MB has set as a condition a state supervision over any possible dialogue with the United States.

Legal Status

El-Erian further wrote that the MB is not eager to start a dialogue with the US soon until their legal status in Egypt has been settled.

His article ran under the title: "Muslim Brotherhood and the United States: Principles and interests debate".

"The group is not in a hurry to start a dialogue with Washington until the Brotherhood’s legal status in Egypt gets resolved," he said.

The MB’s "no-rush" approach is due to historical, political and national reasons, he said, pointing out that the US administration’s stance on opening a dialogue with the Brotherhood is vague and even contradicting.

Citing reasons of MB reservations on holding the dialogue, El-Erian wondered whether the US administration still insists on spreading US hegemony all over the world against the will of everybody.

The US administration’s stance is not clear vis-à-vis a number of significant issues including respecting national sovereignty according to the international law, in addition to democracy that may result in bringing US foes to power in countries considered by Washington as strategic, according to El-Erian.

"MB welcomes the dialogue as a civilized and humanitarian value as long as it would be held with all sectors of the American society, with the presence of everybody except the US administration and according to a clear and known agenda," El-Erian said, adding that the Egyptian Foreign Ministry can attend such dialogue.

During the last 30 years, the MB has periodically received US researchers, academics and media people, he said, noting that he participated in a dialogue with US congressmen at Egypt’s People’s Assembly (Parliament) in 1998.

The "proposed" dialogue would be tough and long due to the contradiction between the American hegemony project and the nascent Islamic project for renaissance and reform adopted by the MB that aims at liberating Islamic nations from all sorts of material or spiritual hegemony to end up in a united international Muslim block, he pointed out.

Holding the dialogue is tough since US administrations are not prepared psychologically to discuss their dangerous bond with Israel, he pointed out.

The MB leading figure noted that the group is also concerned the Egyptian regime may use the dialogue to damage their image before Egyptian, Arab and Islamic public opinion.

To get prepared for the dialogue, MB’s priorities include refining their thoughts about reform, getting trained on holding dialogues and negotiations and being familiarized with Arab and Islamic government’s experiences with successive US administrations, El-Erian noted.

This month, a senior State Department official suggested US officials might be in touch with members of the Muslim Brotherhood who made it to parliament.

A memo drawn up by the US State Department has recently called for direct and permanent political dialogue with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

But the Muslim Brotherhood had earlier denied that the group had been locked in talks with the United States, stressing that the group rejected any reform recipe from abroad.


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