Islamist Wasat Party agrees to meet with ElBaradei without conditions

Ahram Online , Wednesday 7 Aug 2013

Morsi allies will meet with vice president ElBaradei for talks on resolving political deadlock as government declares negotiations failed

Jailed head of the Wasat Party Abu Ela Madi

Leaders of an Islamist party allied with ousted president Mohamed Morsi have agreed to meet with Vice President for International Affairs Mohamed ElBaradei, in an attempt to find a way out of the current political deadlock between supporters of Morsi and the new military-backed government.

Deputy-secretary general of the Wasat Party, Hussein Zayed, told Ahram’s Arabic website on Wednesday that his party will accept a proposal by Egyptian NGO the Egyptian Democratic Agency to meet with ElBaradei.

The party, Zayed said, will enter into negotiations on the condition that the solution to the deadlock be political and peaceful.

The interior ministry has urged Morsi’s supporters, who have been holding sit-ins in Cairo and Giza for several weeks, to disband the protests and go home. Brotherhood leaders have responded with defiance.

Zayed denied claims that his party intends to propose the same initiative that was proposed recently by Islamist figure Selim El-Awa as a base for negotiations, saying that the meeting will be held without any preconditions.

Islamist thinker and former presidential candidate El-Awa, who is known to be close to the Wasat Party, proposed an initiative in late July by which Morsi would delegate his powers to a new interim cabinet which would replace the current interim government. Parliamentary elections would be called within 60 days, according to that effort.

The initiative was adopted by the pro-Morsi National Alliance to Support Legitimacy, of which the Wasat Party is a member.

The Egyptian government, with the help of foreign mediators, has been engaged in reconciliation talks with the Muslim Brotherhood this week, but so far no solution has been reached.

The Muslim Brotherhood and its allies have insisted on Morsi's reinstatement since he was deposed by the army on 3 July following mass protests against him.

The Wasat Party was established in the late 1990's as a splinter group from the Muslim Brotherhood.

Two of its leading members, Abu Ela Madi and Essam Sultan were jailed by the government in mid July on charges of inciting violence.

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