Hardline Egyptian Islamists protest appointment of Christian governor in southern Egypt
The Telegram 04/17/2011
LUXOR, Egypt – Hundreds of hardline Islamists and members of the fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood have blocked railway lines and roads to protest the appointment of a Coptic Christian governor.
The protesters rallied for a second day Sunday in front of the governor’s office in the southern city of Qena and barricaded the railroad tracks, preventing several trains from leaving Qena and Luxor, a popular tourist destination.
Egypt’s ruling military council on Friday appointed 20 new governors to replace those who served under President Hosni Mubarak, who was toppled in February.
The demonstrators are calling for a Muslim governor.
Egypt Islamists Protest Christian Governor From Time.Com 04/18/2011 (The online Time Magazine)
(CAIRO) — Protesters led by hardline Islamists in southern Egypt held their ground Monday, saying they won’t end their campaign of civil disobedience until the government removes a newly appointed Coptic Christian governor.
The protesters, many from the ultraconservative Salafi trend of Islam, have been sitting on train tracks, taken over government buildings and blocked main roads in the southern city of Qena, insisting the new governor won’t properly implement Islamic law.
Attempts by the newly appointed interior minister, who hails from the same area, to defuse the crisis were rebuffed and protesters insisted their sit-in, which began Friday, would continue.
Since the Feb. 11 ousting of President Hosni Mubarak in popular protests, Islamist groups have have been flexing their muscles and are vowing to take a more active political role as Egypt is still drawing its transition to democracy.
The prominent role of these ultraconservative Islamic movements, which were once politically quiescent, has worried many, including the secular activists and youth groups that were the driving force behind the uprising.
He said tensions were so high that the local Christian residents had to stay inside and couldn’t go to church to celebrate Palm Sunday.
A video posted on the YouTube website showed a speaker telling a crowd at the government office: “This won’t work. A Copt won’t implement Islamic law.” According to the constitution, Islamic law is supposed to be the primary source of legislation in the country.
The country’s most organized political opposition group, the long-banned Muslim Brotherhood, has also become more vocal about its plans, drawing on its large network of social groups and followers, which it had for long to operate under strict security oversight from the Mubarak regime.
A senior group leader caused an uproar after he was quoted in local papers as saying his group seeks to establish an Islamic state, imposing Islamic punishments — including amputating hands for theft.
“We can’t sleep anymore, so we give room for this religion to thrive in Egypt. Don’t let us waste this opportunity,” Saad al-Husseini, a Brotherhood leader, said, according to the daily Al-Masry Al-Youm.
Court order to dissolve Egypt’s NDP deals body blow to old power structure
The Christian Science Monitor 04/17/2011
Cairo – The gutted headquarters of Egypt’s former ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) sits blackened and abandoned after having been torched during February’s pro-democracy revolution. Many of the party’s leading figures are now in jail awaiting trial or charges.
Still, many in Egypt had feared that the party of ousted leader Hosni Mubarak could yet use its vast organizational network and resources to roll back the revolution – and win a wide swath of seats in parliamentary elections scheduled for September.
Those concerns subsided Saturday when Egypt’s Supreme Administrative Court ordered the dissolution of the NDP.
“It’s illogical for any instruments of the regime to remain, now that the regime itself has fallen,” said the court in a statement. The court also ordered the party’s vast assets be liquidated and the funds turned over to the state. “This money is actually the money of the people,” it said.
SO NOW ALL THAT REMAINS IS THE MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD!
IS THAT HOW WE ARE SPELLING DEMOCRACY TODAY?
They have followed the Iranian Revolution playbook to the letter in Egypt …. they are actually ahead of schedule …
Radial Islamist groups gaining stranglehold in Egypt The Telegraph London 04/17/2011
The rapid spread of Muslim political parties ahead of September’s parliamentary elections has strengthened fears that Egyptian democracy will be dominated by radical Islamic movements.
The Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt’s largest Islamic movement and the founder of Hamas, has set up a network of political parties around the country that eclipse the following of the middle class activists that overthrew the regime. On the extreme fringe of the Brotherhood, Islamic groups linked to al-Qeada are organising from the mosques to fill the vacuum left by the collapse of the dictatorship.
The military-led government already faces accusations that it is bowing to the surge in support for the Muslim movements, something that David Cameron warned of in February when he said Egyptian democracy would be strongly Islamic.
An Egyptian court on Saturday disbanded the National Democratic Party.
Mohammed Badie, the Muslim Brotherhood’s spiritual leader, last week predicted the group’s candidates would win 75 per cent of the seats it contested.
Fundamentalist factions have also emerged as parties. Gamaa al-Islamiya, an al-Qaeda linked group that promotes Salafist traditions has used its mosques as a political base for the first time since the 1970s.
A scare campaign that a No vote in last months referendum would eliminate Islamic law from the Egyptian constitution ensured a 77 per cent Yes result.
But the April 6th movement that spearheaded protests has no clear plan for party politics. Diplomats have warned the demonstrators are not well prepared for elections.
“The leadership of the protests was so focused on the street-by-street detail of the revolution, they have no clue what to do in a national election,” said a US official involved in the demonstrations. “Now at dinner the protesters can tell me every Cairo street that was important in the revolution but not how they will take power in Egypt.”
(What the community Orgainzer started, the Muslim Brotherhood will finish)
Mahsud Arishie, a teacher visiting the square, said Egypt would be a different country in the wake of the uprising. “Muslims have their own space now where there is no pressure from the government, only a direct connection to the Lord in the sky,” he said as he made his way to the prayers. “That does not mean our country will be hostile to the West but it does mean we will do what we want.”
(Sounds very Iranian to me …. )
Amr Moussa, the Arab League president, has conceded that its inevitable that Islamic factions will be the bedrock of the political system.
As hardliners compete for street power, Egypt’s Christians – who make up 10 per cent of the population – are emigrating in growing numbers. Al-Masry al-Youm, an Egyptian newspaper, reported last week that the Canadian embassy had been swamped by visa requests from Coptic Christians. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/egypt/8457030/Radial-Islamist-groups-gaining-stranglehold-in-Egypt.html
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