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Morocco ruling party says independent of Brotherhood

January 11, 2015 at 2:34 pm

Moroccan Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane on Saturday denied accusations that Morocco’s government coalition, which is led by his Justice and Development Party had sought to “Islamise” the Moroccan society.

Speaking during a meeting of the National Council of his party, Benkirane said that true the Justice and Development Party belonged to the Islamic movement, yet it had its own philosophy.

“The political reform model set by the party has nothing to do with unknown parties either inside or outside Morocco,” Benkirane said.

He added that the philosophy of the party was the fruit of efforts made by youths who believed in reform.

Benkirane said his party had adopted democratic principles, but preserved its Islamist background.

“It is [the party] part of Morocco’s Muslims and non-Muslims,” he said.

He lauded what he called the “achievements” his party-led government coalition made in Morocco over the past three years.

Benkirane’s remarks come in the wake of accusations that the Justice and Development Party had loyalty to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

The accusations were voiced out in Morocco soon after a diplomatic standoff appeared to be in the offing between Morocco and Egypt.

Morocco’s state television had recently described the 2013 ouster of Egypt’s elected President Mohamed Morsi as a “military coup.”

A party leader told Anadolu Agency earlier that the Justice and Development Party had always been independent – at the organisational level – of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, as well as of other Islamist movements.

“There is no organisational relationship between the party and the Brotherhood,” Khaled Rahmouni said.