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Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood seeks political party status

Last updated on: February 15, 2011 21:58 IST

Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood seeks political party status

Egypt's long banned Muslim Brotherhood said it will form a political party with Islamic values once democracy is ushered in the Arab nation. "The Muslim Brotherhood group believes in the freedom of the formation of political parties. They are eager to have a political party," spokesman Mohammed Mursi said in a statement on the Brotherhood website.

The Brotherhood "envisions the establishment of a democratic, civil state that draws on universal measures of freedom and justice, with central Islamic values serving all Egyptians regardless of colour, creed, political trend or religion," it said in the statement, four days after President Hosni Mubarak, their tormentor, was ousted.

Although officially illegal, the Muslim Brotherhood is regarded as one of the most organised opposition groups in Egypt. It has said it does not plan to run a candidate for president when elections are held to replace Hosni Mubarak, who resigned on Friday after an uprising against him.

A former lawmaker of the Brotherhood has also been included in an eight-member panel formed by the Egyptian military to study and suggest amendments to the Mubarak-eraconstitution. The Muslim Brotherhood, banned since 1954, could not form a party but fielded candidates for parliament as independents.

In 2005, it made a strong showing, winning 20 per cent of seats in the Egyptian parliament. But it was marginalised in the most recent election in November and December, plagued by fraud, allegedly by Mubarak's National Democratic Party.

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