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Daily News Analysis

Egypt's military-installed regime declares Ikhwan a

Crescent International

Unable to crush the Ikhwan al-Muslimoon movement, the military-installed regime in Egypt has resorted to more crude tactics. The Ikhwan (Muslim Brotherhood) has been declared a “terrorist” organization by appointed prime minister Hazem Beblawi (in photo) ahead of the January 14-15, 2014 referendum in order to isolate it. Pro-Ikhwan, anti-military regime protests continue in Egypt.

Cairo, Crescent-online
December 24, 2013, 10:03 EST

Unable to stem the tide of ongoing protests against the military-installed regime, the military appointed Prime Minister of Egypt, Hazem Belbawi declared the Ikhwan al-Muslimoon (Muslim Brotherhood) a “terrorist” group.

The regime has been making similar statements in the past fearing the staying power of the Brotherhood and their ability to bring people onto the streets despite a brutal crackdown on its leaders and supporters. Almost all Ikhwan leaders are languishing in jail including the group’s murshid (guide) Mohammed Badie and ousted President Mohammed Mursi.

Most of the Ikhwan leaders have gone on hunger strike in prison over mistreatment an abuses by the guards.

Protests have also spread to Egypt’s universities where the Ikhwan enjoy widespread support.

The latest outburst from the military-installed premier came today when he declared the Muslim Brotherhood movement a “terrorist” group. This occurred in the wake of a car bomb early today (Cairo time) near a police building in Mansoura that reportedly killed 14 people.

“Prime Minister Beblawi has declared the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organisation,” state news agency MENA quoted the premier's spokesman Sherif Showky as saying.

It has not been established whether the Ikhwan were behind the attack but the military-installed regime misses no opportunity to blame every crime on the group, as it has done concerning frequent attacks in the lawless Sinai Peninsula.

A court in Egypt has already banned the activities of the Brotherhood. The “terrorist” label is being used to further push the movement into isolation prior to the January 14-15 referendum on a new constitution.

The “new constitution” was drafted by a committee of 50 hand-picked members by the military. The Ikhwan and its political party, the Justice and Freedom Party were excluded from the committee.

These 50 “wise men” amended several articles of the constitution that had been approved a year ago under Mursi’s presidency and had received 64 percent approval from the masses.

To show how subservient the committee members are to the military, the new constitutional draft includes an article that gives the military the authority to appoint the defence minister from among its own ranks. This will remain in force until 2018. Further, civilians will have no oversight over the military budget even if civilians have a popular mandate from the people.


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