'We will not recognise criminal Israel,' says Brotherhood leader

Ahram Online, Sunday 1 Jan 2012

The Muslim Brotherhood will put the 1979 Peace Treaty with Israel to the test of public opinion, Brotherhood leader says

Rashad Bayoumy, deputy head of the Muslim Brotherhood (Photo: Ahram)

The Muslim Brotherhood (MB) will not recognise the State of Israel, Brotherhood leader Rashad Bayoumy told London-based Al-Hayat Arabic daily.

“Is it a pre-condition to recognise Israel in order to govern?” asked Bayoumy. “This is not possible, no matter what the circumstances are. We do not recognise Israel at all. It is a criminal enemy occupier.”

Bayoumy, the deputy to the group's supreme guide, underlined that no member of the MB will ever sit with an Israeli. “I will not allow myself to sit with a criminal,” Bayoumy said. “We will not deal with them in any way.”

Bayoumy also noted that the Brotherhood may hold a national referendum to measure public opinion before taking a decision about the 1979 Peace Treaty between Egypt and Israel.

“We will take all the correct legal procedures with the treaty. It is not binding for me. The people will give the opinion about it,” he said.

Bayoumy added that the Brotherhood usually respects international agreements, but everyone has the right to reconsider a treaty and the Egyptian people were never asked their opinion in the first place.

“We did not agree to the peace treaty. We will take all respectable legal procedures towards it,” Bayoumy said. “We have the right to present it to the people and the elected parliament so that they can come to a decision about it.“

The Brotherhood’s political arm, the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), won around 50 per cent of the seats in the first two phases of three-stage parliamentary elections.

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