Monday, July 16, 2012

In Egypt, Clinton Fends Off Allegations of U.S. Support for Muslim Brotherhood

CNS News
July 16, 2012
Egyptians outside the Amercan Embassy in Cairo on Saturday protest against the United States. Placards bear slogans including, “Obama: Don’t send your dollars to jihadists” and “If you like the Ikhwan (the Muslim Brotherhood), take them with you.” (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

( – On her first visit to Egypt since the country’s post-revolution, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was confronted by allegations that the Obama administration had quietly backed the Muslim Brotherhood in its successful quest for the presidency.
At various stops in Cairo and Alexandria this past weekend, demonstrators protested her visit, with one liberal youth organization, the Front for Peaceful Change, issuing a statement accusing the U.S. of making secret deals with the Muslim Brotherhood.
An article on the anti-Clinton protests in Al-Wafd, a daily newspaper published by the liberal Wafd Party, carried the headline, “The she-devil in the presidential palace.”
Some prominent Coptic Christian activists and lawmakers in the – currently suspended – parliament refused to meet with Clinton.
A joint statement from four of them accused the U.S. of demonstrating its support for Islamists above other political forces in Egypt – an allegation frequently aired over recent months in Egyptian media and on social networking Web sites.
One of the four, lawmaker and political analyst Emad Gad, told Al-Ahramnewspaper the U.S. government had also secretly agreed to back Brotherhood presidential candidate Mohamed Morsi – now sworn in as president – in return for assurances that a Morsi government would not restore ties with Iran and would pressurize the Palestinian group Hamas into halting attacks against Israel.
(Hamas is the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, set up by the Egyptian organization in 1987. The group, which seized control of the Gaza Strip in 2007 amid bloody fighting against the Fatah faction, is designated by the U.S. as a “foreign terrorist organization.”)
Gad predicted that President Obama would face accusations during his election campaign of having backed Islamists in the region at the expense of non-Islamist forces.

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