NDP slams Brotherhood on student "militia" garb

Magdy Samaan
3 Min Read

Cairo: National Democratic Party (NDP) members of the People’s Assembly (PA) strongly condemned Sunday what they described as a military show of strength by the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated students at Al Azhar University last week.

The NDP, which comprises the majority in the PA, voiced their fears of a return to violence by Islamist groups.

In the meantime, members of the Brotherhood, a banned – but tolerated group – refrained from reacting to the anger and vitriol directed at them

At the beginning of the parliamentary session, Mofid Shehab, Minister of Legal Affairs and Legislative Assemblies, presented three reports from the Ministry of Interior, the President of Al Azhar University and the public prosecutor.

“The whole country has been struck with fear since Sunday [Dec. 10] by the sight of students wearing black masks like military militias we see in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine, Shehab said.

He asked: “Who is the enemy they want to fight? Are they their professors or their colleagues who differ with them in opinion? Brotherhood MPs countered by demanding a fact-finding committee to investigate what happened at Al Azhar University.

Saad Al Katatni, head of the MB’s parliamentary block described the students’ actions as a “sports show .

He commended the fact that those involved had apologized and complimented the reaction of the MB which condemned any action that could raise the public’s fears.

“This is the expected position of a group that has always sought reform through peaceful means, he told the session.

He explained what happened as a natural reaction to preventing students from exercising their constitutional right to run in students union elections.

But, the assembly voted against setting up a fact-finding committee saying the Al Azhar University is an independent institution which should resolve such crises on its own.

Shehab presented a report by Al Azhar University President Ahmed El Tayeb, who confirmed that during the past two years a growing number of students have been recruited by the Brotherhood which offers to pay their tuition fees.

They repeatedly displayed MB banners and shouted their slogans on campus, such as “Nar Nar gameat Al Azhar ayda nar (Fire fire, Azhar University is on fire) in continuous violation of university rules. The report pointed to the fact that external forces from the MB were manipulating the students.

A public prosecutor’s investigation claimed the Brotherhood is carrying out a plan to spread chaos in Egypt through demonstrations and orchestrated sit-ins to consolidate their authority, set up an Islamic Caliphate and counter civil laws.

The issue was finally referred to a joint education and defense committee to examine the reasons behind the incident and make recommendations.

Share This Article
Leave a comment