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Dissolution of Muslim Brotherhood a "likely, but unwise" choice: analysts

Muslim Brotherhood (MB) is facing potential dissolution by the Egyptian government, but analysts caution that such measures could push the group further toward aggression and radicalism.

Dissolving the MB would add more complexity to the already deteriorated security situation, as the group will be forced to work from "underground" and may tend to join hardline Jihadist militant groups in revenge operations, said Emad Awaad, professor of political studies at Cairo University.

Ahmed Baan, political researcher at Nile Center for Strategic Studies, said that dissolving the MB would be the worst choice for the government to address current political crisis.

Dissolving the group will lead to working "from behind the curtain," as well as more violence, Baan told Xinhua.

Awaad predicted that the group would be dissolved very soon, as it was "illegally" formed, noting that "There is no legal description for it since 1954."

Under the administration of ousted president Mohamed Morsi, the MB was proclaimed as "a civil association," which is "in violation to the laws concerning civil activities," said the professor.

The continuation of the MB's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) as a political party is also "doubtful," as the constitution bans forming parties on religious base, said Awaad.

The dissolution of MB would not affect "its existence in the streets," as it already gains more sympathy from ordinary people after hundreds of its members were killed or detained during the dispersal operation by the military, Awaad noted.

More than 75 heads of the Brotherhood's administrative branches across the country were arrested on early Thursday, besides another 100 key members detained since the dispersal operation on Aug. 14 that left nearly 900 supporters of Morsi killed.

Baan, the political researcher and also former member of the MB, said that the problem with the Brotherhood is not political or legal, but related to radical beliefs of its supporters. As the MB is an ideological religious group, security measures against it won't work, he said.

According to Baan, the MB has been working in the dark since its establishment in 1928, with no one knowing about its funding. The FJP's party is not a real political arm for the group, but rather a cover and title, said Baan.

The MB currently works under the umbrella of the National Alliance for Supporting Legitimacy, a pro-Morsi alliance formed of 33 Islamists movements, which calls for daily protests across Egypt.

Yousri el-Azabawi, political expert in Ahram Centre for Political and Strategic studies, told Xinhua the MB group will be dissolved officially, but won't abandon its political activities.

El-Azabawi noted that many people longed for the dissolution of MB after the killing of 25 off-duty policemen, burning churches and government institutions, as well as making Egypt appear like a "failed" country internationally.

The MB's FJP party, which garnered with the Islamic parties more than 70 percent of the seats in the parliament elected last year, wouldn't obtain seats in the coming elections, el-Azabawi predicted.

[Source: By Marwa Yahya, Xinhua, Cairo, 22Aug13]

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Crisis in Egypt
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