Islamist presidential hopeful tells Muslim Brotherhood to stick to religion

Ahram Online , Thursday 22 Sep 2011

Abul-Fotouh says MB should avoid political activity and rejects Sheikh Hazem Abu Ismail's view on making the veil a legal requirement

Abdel-Moneim Abul-Fotouh
Islamist presidential hopeful Abdel-Moneim Abul-Fotouh

Abdel-Moneim Abul-Fotouh on Wednesday said it was better for the Muslim Brotherhood, and religious groups in general, to stay away from politics and focus on religious activities. The potential presidential candidate, and former member of the Muslim Brotherhood, made the comments in a public lecture at the Heliopolis Club.

Abul-Fotouh also stated that Egyptian-Israeli relations needed reconsideration in order to be in the best interests of Egypt, and that he would like the Egyptian people to be kept updated with the situation and not kept in the dark as happened in the past.

He rejected the notion that any amendment to the Camp David treaty could lead to war with Israel.

He said the current wave of strikes in the country showed Egyptians are already suffering from the absence of transparency in politics during the transition, because they do not know when the regime will be stabilised and their demand met.

Abul-Fotouh also commented on the statement of potential presidential candidate, Sheikh Hazem Abu Ismail, who said he would force the veil on women in Egypt by law. Abul-Fotouh said those statements were unrealistic because forcing religious values on people will turn them into hypocrites and it is not believable that a regime would arrest unveiled ladies.

Answering a question about his stand on the arts, Abul-Fotouh said authorities should not confiscate art works except by a court order.

He also said that he will soon reveal the conclusions of a meeting held two weeks ago between the  potential presidential candidates, adding that this was the first in a series of meetings between the candidates as they seek to put the interests of the nation above their own personal interests.  


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