The Muslim Brotherhood and the newly-declared Islamic State (Isis) “no doubt” share a number of similarities, said the Ministry of Religious Endowments.
In a Friday statement, the Ministry criticised the Muslim Brotherhood—of which deposed president Mohamed Morsi is a member—by comparing it with Isis, the group that has slaughtered civilians and destroyed cities as it attempts to secure territory in Syria and Iraq and expand its borders.
“No doubt there are connections between Isis and the Muslim Brotherhood,” read the statement. “They are both waging a war against their homelands with vandalism, destruction and murder—murder on behalf of the enemies of the state who fund them.”
The statement also said that both Isis and the Muslim Brotherhood exploit women to further their own cause, namely through forced marriage.
The third link between the two groups, read the statement, is that both use “lying and deception in the name of religion”.
“Their religious leaders are ignorant and unqualified, and they use religion to play with the minds of the public.”
“The main commonality between the two groups is their terrorist acts,” said a spokesman from the Ministry of Religious Endowments.
In June Isis overtook Mosul, one of Iraq’s largest cities, forcing Christians in the city to flee, pay a religious tax or be executed. They have claimed large swaths of land in both Iraq and Syria, and command a considerable armed force. The United States Congress said Isis has “ambitions and capabilities greater than Al-Qaida”.
On 25 December, Egypt declared the banned Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organisation. Nearly all of its institutions, organisations and charities were dissolved by the courts. The Muslim Brotherhood has often been blamed by the Ministry of Interior for terrorist attacks claimed by other groups.