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Egypt govt declares Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group

Cairo: Egypt's military-backed interim government on Wednesday declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group, criminalising all its activities, its financing, and even membership of the group from which the country's ousted president hails.The announcement was

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk Updated on: December 26, 2013 9:34 IST
egypt govt declares muslim brotherhood a terrorist group
egypt govt declares muslim brotherhood a terrorist group

Cairo: Egypt's military-backed interim government on Wednesday declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group, criminalising all its activities, its financing, and even membership of the group from which the country's ousted president hails.


The announcement was aimed at crippling the Brotherhood, and poses a dramatic escalation of the fight between the government and the group, which has waged near-daily protests since the popularly backed military coup that toppled President Mohammed Morsi in July.

Hossam Eissa, the Minister of Higher Education, read out the Cabinet statement after a long meeting.

"We declare the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group, criminalising the group as a terrorist one," said Eissa.

He said anyone who participated in any of the group's activities would be punished by law.

Eissa said that the decision was in response to Tuesday's deadly bombing targeting a police headquarters in the Nile Delta city of Mansoura, which killed 16 people and wounded more than a hundred.

The Brotherhood has denied being responsible for the Mansoura attack, and an al-Qaida inspired group has claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing.

In his speech Eissa offered no evidence linking the Brotherhood to Tuesday's attack.

He said that the government had notified other Arab countries about its decision.

Cairo residents reacted positively to the decision to declare the Brotherhood illegal.

"It's a very good decision but it's coming late, it should've been taken earlier. This is a group that is using violence, terrorism and explosives, it should be considered as a terrorist group and should be banned," said one resident.

The decision comes after a sweeping decision on Tuesday aimed at draining the Brotherhood's finances by freezing the funds of more than a thousand non-government organisations with links to the group, and putting more than 100 schools run by the group under government supervision.

That directly attacks the grassroots strength of the Brotherhood, where it has much of its power in Egyptian life.

The declaration also gives the armed forces and the police the right to enter universities and prevent protests.

The Brotherhood has organisations and political parties in other nations in the region.

Founded in 1928, it denounced violence in the late 1970s.

Also on Tuesday, former prime minister Hesham Kandil, who served under toppled Islamist president Mohammed Morsi, was arrested in order to serve a one-year prison sentence.

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