Egypt’s military-backed interim government has declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group, criminalising all its activities, its financing and even membership to the group from which the country’s ousted president hails.
The announcement is aimed at crippling the Brotherhood and poses a dramatic escalation of the fight between the government and group, which has waged near-daily protests since the July 3 military coup that toppled President Mohammed Morsi.
Hossam Eissa, the Minister of Higher Education, read out the Cabinet statement after long meeting. Eissa said that the decision was in response to Tuesday’s deadly bombing targeting a police headquarters in a Nile Delta city which killed 16 people and wounded more than 100. The Brotherhood denied being responsible for the Mansoura attack and an al-Qaida inspired group claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing yesterday.
I don’t like the Muslim Brotherhood, but I don’t think they are a terrorist group. Trying to outlaw them didn’t work for Mubarak (made them more popular) and I doubt this will work. It is hard to see a return to democratic government, as no election will be seen a valid if the party that last won an election is banned.