Brotherhood’s FJP hits back at Suleiman over scathing attack

Omar Suleiman’s controversial remarks about the Muslim Brotherhood spark an angry response from its political arm, the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP)
Mohamed Morsi

FJP head Mohamed Morsi

A fresh verbal exchange erupted between presidential candidate Omar Suleiman and the Muslim Brotherhood’s political arm, which dismissed the former intelligence chief’s remarks as “worthless”.Suleiman, who harbours lingering hard feelings against Islamists, launched a scathing attack on the MB in a lengthy interview published on Ahram’s daily newspaper on Friday.

He accused them of burning police stations during last year’s 18-day uprising as well as making the most of the revolution aftermath to seize power. Suleiman also said he would reveal “black box details” from the history of the MB.

Holding around 45% seats of Egypt’s lower house (the People’s Assembly), the MB’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) has also fielded two candidates to contest the first presidential elections following the overthrow of autocratic leader Hosni Mubarak.

“Suleiman, who was part of the dismantled regime, is the one who did everything he could to suppress the revolution,” FJP head Mohamed Mursi, one of the party’s presidential candidates along with Khairat El-Shater, said in a phone interview with Al-Jazeera.

“His claims (that the MB burned police stations and stirred chaos) are completely baseless, he doesn’t have any proof. If he has any documents to back up his claims, then he should present them to the public prosecution.

“His black box remarks are worthless that do not deserve any reply. Anyway, we are considering suing him,” Mursi added.

Egypt’s parliament on Thursday passed legislation banning top officials who served under Mubarak from becoming president, a move which could prohibit Suleiman from running for president.

The 75-year-old served as Vice President during Mubarak’s final days in power.

Required to collect 30,000 recommendations from across at least 15 governorates, or 30 MP endorsements to run for president, Suleiman collected 60,000 recommendations instead in a short span of time.

“Suleiman got the recommendations from security apparatuses,” Mursi concluded.

It remains to be seen whether Egypt’s ruling military, the Supreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF), would approve the new controversial legislation.

The presidential election gets under way on May 23 with two days of voting expected to be followed in June with a run-off between the top two candidates.

( / 13.04.2012)

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