Muslim Brotherhood to Egypt: Don’t squeeze out moderates
The new leader of the Muslim Brotherhood has said that government efforts to squeeze Egypt’s biggest opposition group out of politics would only spur on “deviant” and potentially violent Islamic movements. Mohamed Badie, 66, told Marwa Awad and Edmund Blair of the Reuters Cairo bureau the group would campaign in this year’s parliamentary election, but a state crackdown would likely prevent a repeat of its success in 2005 when it secured a fifth of the seats.
“The Muslim Brotherhood, which carries the banner of moderate Islam, must be given the chance to teach Egyptian society to benefit the nation and its people,” said Badie, picked as the group’s new leader this month. “When we were prevented from playing the role of spreading moderate Islam, thorns sprouted in Egypt’s soil and so did terrorism,” he said, adding he rejected “deviant and ‘takfiri’ ideology”, referring to groups that declared people infidels.