Egypt: Brotherhood presidency candidate says Shariah ´final goal´ (YNetNews.Com -Yedioth Internet) Roi Kais, AP Published: 04.05.12, 17:14)
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Khairat el-Shater meets with Salafi clerics, stresses he would form
group of religious scholars to ´help parliament´ enforce Islamic law.
Omar Suleiman gives up presidential bid
The Muslim Brotherhood´s candidate for Egypt´s presidency is lobbying
hard for support of ultraconservative Muslim clerics, promising them
a say over legislation in the future to ensure it is in line with
Islamic law, as he tries to rally the divided Islamist vote behind
Khairat el-Shater met for four hours Tuesday night with a panel of
Salafi scholars and clerics, called the Jurisprudence Commission for
Rights and Reform, trying to win their support.
The discussion focused on "the shape of the state and the
implementation of Shariah," the commission said on its Facebook page
"El-Shater stressed that Shariah is his top and final goal and that
he would work on forming a group of religious scholars to help
parliament achieve this goal," the statement read. The commission is
an umbrella group of Islamist factions, mostly Salafis, set up after
last year´s anti-Mubarak uprising.
The promise resembled an item in a 2007 political platform by the
Brotherhood, when it was still a banned opposition movement. It
called for parliament to consult with a body of clerics on
legislation to ensure it aligns with Shariah. The proposal was met
with a storm of condemnation at the time, and the Brotherhood backed
off of it.
El-Shater also said he plans to implement reforms within the Interior
Ministry, which had a key role in the repression of Egypt´s
Earlier this week, the candidate for presidency met with a US
Congress delegation in Cairo. During the meeting, Republican
Congressman David Dreier said the United States would not interfere
with the Egyptian peopleís choice for president.
Egyptians should decide what kind of democracy they want, Dreier
said, adding that El-Shater stressed his commitment to human rights
and the rule of law.
A Muslim Brotherhood delegation is currently visiting the US to allay
American concerns and present the movement as socially moderate.
The delegation´s visit was set to culminate with a one-day conference
on political Islam at the Carnegie Endowment for International peace
Thursday in Washington.
POLITICO reported Wednesday that members of Egypt´s Muslim
Brotherhood met with US officials, including White House staffers.
"Following Egypt´s revolution, we have broadened our engagement to
include new and emerging political parties and actors," White House
spokesman Tommy Vietor told POLITICO.
Meanwhile, Egypt´s former spy chief and vice president Omar Suleiman
announced Wednesday he would not run for president. "The country is
going through one of the most difficult and important periods in its
modern history," he said in the statement.
"I tried until dawn yesterday to overcome the obstacles I faced
relating to the current situation and the administrative,
organizational and financial requirements to become a candidate.
However, I found them to be beyond my capacity to fulfill. If I do
otherwise (try to overcome these obstacles) I would be betraying the
principles I´ve believed in my whole life. Therefore, I apologize for
not responding to your call, maybe for the first time ever, due to my
desire to preserve my cherished past," Suleiman added. (Copyright
2012 © Yedioth Internet 04/05/12)
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