Egypt decides to dissolve Brotherhood NGO
06 September 2013, 14:30
Cairo - Egypt's army-backed government has decided to
dissolve the Muslim Brotherhood as a registered non-governmental organisation,
a state-run newspaper reported on Friday, pressing a crackdown on deposed
President Mohammed Morsi’s movement.
The decision applies to the NGO registered by the
Brotherhood in March in response to a lawsuit that argued the group had no
It marks a mostly symbolic legal blow to Morsi’s group as
the authorities round up its members in the harshest crackdown in decades.
"The minister's decision has in fact been issued but it
will be announced at the start of next week in a press conference,"
Al-Akhbar newspaper quoted Hany Mahana, spokesperson for the minister of social
solidarity, as saying.
The Brotherhood won parliamentary and presidential elections
after veteran autocrat Hosni Mubarak was overthrown in 2011 but the army
deposed Morsi on 3 July in response to mass protests against his rule.
The security forces have killed hundreds of Morsi’s
supporters and arrested many of its leaders on charges of inciting violence.
There has so far been no attempt to ban its political wing, the Freedom and
Al-Akhbar said Social Solidarity Minister Ahmed el-Boraie's
decision to dissolve the group as an NGO stemmed from accusations that the
Brotherhood had used its headquarters to fire and store weapons and explosives.
Though formally outlawed under Mubarak, the Brotherhood was
grudgingly tolerated for much of his presidency, taking part in parliamentary
elections and operating a charity network that helped to it to become Egypt's
biggest political party.
The Brotherhood was founded in 1928 but formally dissolved
by Egypt's army rulers in 1954. The group's opponents drew on that to argue the
Brotherhood remained an illegal movement even after Mubarak's downfall.
In response, the Brotherhood decided to shore up its legal
standing by formally registering as an NGO.