CAIRO: Abdel-Halim Qandil, coordinator of the Kefaya movement for change, denied to Daily News Egypt reports claiming that he accused the April 6 Movement and some opposition parties of being funded by the American secret service.
Reports had emerged last week that Qandil had accused the April 6 Movement and opposition parties Al-Ghad and the Democratic Front Party of receiving foreign funding, with some reports stating he explicitly said the US secret service.
However, Qandil said he had been asked a different question from an Al-Masry Al-Youm reporter and his answer had been taken out of context.
“Al-Masry Al-Youm had falsely reported that I said that Al-Ghad and the Democratic Front Party were receiving funding from abroad. I sent Al-Masry Al-Youm a letter for clarification which was never published, Qandil said.
The Kefaya coordinator added that he had been asked about no longer allowing the April 6 Movement access to Kefaya headquarters.
“I replied that an internal dispute arose within the April 6 Movement over a travel grant for some members from Freedom House which split the movement into four groups, three who still maintained ties with Kefaya and one which didn’t, some of whom are members of Ghad and Democratic Front Party, Qandil said.
Al-Masry Al-Youm had reported Thursday that members of the April 6 splinter group were planning to file a lawsuit against Qandil for the alleged comments, which he insists he didn’t make.
Qandil also refused to comment on the possible lawsuit, saying, “I will not comment on such trivialities.
The newspaper report quoted Ahmed Maher, leader of the April 6 Movement in its current guise, as saying that the group intended to file the lawsuit to counter the injustice placed on it with these allegations after they had fought hard for reform and change.
The group said in a statement that Qandil’s comments had been exploited by the ruling National Democratic Party to smear it and all Egyptian opposition.
Qandil insisted that he had merely explained what happened to the April 6 Movement prior to its split. A former member of the group who asked for his name to be withheld told Daily News Egypt that a schism had formed over the Freedom House travel grant.
Freedom House is a US-based organization that according to its website “is an independent watchdog organization that supports the expansion of freedom around the world.
Qandil said, “It’s just a media bang from beginning to end.