Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Muslim Brotherhood Says Will Not Honor Peace Treaty with Israel



Deputy head of Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party denies comments by U.S. State Department that Brotherhood made guarantees to honor peace deal with Israel, says, "treaty is not sacred and can and should be changed."
Daniel Siryoti, Eli Leon and Reuters

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, which claims it has won at least 41 percent of the seats in Egypt's lower house of parliament in the third round of voting, on Saturday denied remarks made by U.S. State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland that the Islamist group made guarantees to the U.S. that it would continue to respect Egypt's peace treaty with Israel. n an interview over the weekend with the London-based Al-Hayat newspaper, the deputy head of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, Essam Arian, said, "We never promised that we would honor the peace treaty with Israel. The treaty is not sacred and we can and should make changes in it."

Another senior member of the party told the London-based newspaper Asharq Alawsat, "The movement's position is not to recognize the Zionist entity and not to recognize peace agreements with hostile entities, and this position will never change."

The official results of the third and final round of the Egyptian elections for the lower house of parliament were expected to be published Sunday. According to most estimates, the Islamist camp, which comprises the Freedom and Justice Party and the Salafists, won almost two-thirds of the assembly seats so far.

It may be some weeks before the exact shape of the lower house is known because of various run-off votes. However, it is unlikely that their outcome will chip away at the dominance of the Islamists, who now look set to wield major influence over the shaping of a new constitution. That document will be drafted by a 100-strong body, selected by the new assembly.

The Brotherhood has promised that Egyptians of all persuasions will have their say and while the strong Islamist performance has alarmed some Egyptians and Western governments that backed Mubarak, it is far from clear whether rival Islamists will cooperate in the new legislature.



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