Brotherhood denounce statement calling participants in Friday's protests 'heretics'

Ahram Online, Thursday 26 May 2011

While continuing its opposition to Friday's planned protests, the Muslim Brotherhood blasts a statement deeming anyone who participates a heretic

The Muslim Brotherhood has rejected a statement released yesterday that denounced anyone who participates in the "Second Day of Rage" protests as a heretic (kafir), says one of the group's senior members.

Essam El-Erian, deputy president of the group’s newly formed Freedom and Justice Party, says that the statement was released by Salafi groups and is not connected to the Muslim Brotherhood in any way.

El-Erian added that the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces is an important partner in the revolution and expressed his concern about Friday’s protests, saying he is worried protesters will insult the armed forces, which will not reflect well on the Egyptian revolution.

The Muslim Brotherhood released a statement yesterday announcing that they would not participate in the protests, insisting that the protests would only cause tension between the people and the armed forces.

El-Erian added that political forces in Egypt are positively working towards creating a unified candidate list for the parliamentary elections that will reflect political diversity in the country. This, he said, should calm the Egyptian people and erase any fear they have regarding the Brotherhood's political ambitions.

El-Erian pointed out that most of Egypt’s political forces agree on the principles of the constitution, including that Egypt will be a civic state and that Article 2 of the constitution, which stipulates that Sharia (Islamic Law) is the principal source of legislation, should remain.

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