The Muslim Brotherhood has blamed “internal and external entities” for the bloody clashes in Cairo’s Maspero area on 9 October. “This was not just about a problem over a church in Aswan,” it claimed in a statement. “This is about counter-revolutionaries seeking to impede the country’s march towards freedom, justice and democracy,” A civil war, the Brotherhood added, is not beyond the realms of possibility. “That’s the price that these entities are prepared to make the people of Egypt pay.”
According to the Muslim Brotherhood’s Guidance Bureau, “Legitimate demands can be made at the appropriate times and through the appropriate channels. All Egyptians, not just our Coptic brothers, have legitimate demands, but now is not the time to be making them.” The current government is part of the interim stage, the Guidance Bureau spokesman said, so even if decrees are issued at this stage, they will be reviewed once an elected government is in place.
The Brotherhood called for promised elections to be held “in accordance with an agreed timetable in order to speed up the transfer of power… and the return of stability, with its many advantages for everyone in Egypt”. The Islamic movement also called for a “political isolation” law to ban those who “corrupt political life” and so limit the possibility of violence and chaos, especially during the election period.
The Copts claim to have been subjected to “injustice and marginalization” but this, claims the Muslim Brotherhood, was under “a corrupt regime that did not respect religion”; all Egyptians were subjected to this injustice. The Brotherhood’s statement called for calm at this difficult time as the interim government should not be held responsible for what happened in the past.