Muslim Brotherhood asks Egyptian military to cede power

The military-controlled government appears overwhelmed by domestic and foreign crises,including a deadly riot last week followed by violent protests.

Written by Agencies | Cairo | Published:February 10, 2012 1:58 pm

A senior leader of the Muslim Brotherhood,world’s oldest and one of the largest Islamist movements,has reportedly called on the Egyptian military to give up civilian government control and return to the barracks.

The Brotherhood,the formerly outlawed Islamist group that now dominates Parliament,had previously said it was content to wait for the June deadline by which the generals had pledged to turn over power,which they seized with the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak last year.

According to the New York Times,the Muslim Brotherhood’s change of stance comes on the eve of the February 11 anniversary former president Hosni Mubarak’s downfall.

It also comes as other activists around the country have called for a general strike to demand the end of military rule,a call the Brotherhood has previously resisted.

The military-controlled government appears overwhelmed by domestic and foreign crises,including a deadly soccer riot last week followed by five days of violent protests.

A standoff with Washington too has imperiled the movement of billions of dollars in United States aid and international loans,and an economy teetering on collapse.

“We must start the formation of a coalition government immediately,to deal in particular with the economic situation and the state of lawlessness in this homeland,” Khairat el Shater,deputy to the Brotherhood’s Supreme Guide,said in the online statement.

Shater pointed in particular to the government’s repeated use of deadly force against civilian protesters.

“Dealing with the demonstrators violently is a mistake,a sign of weakness and mismanagement by the Ministry of Interior,” he said.

The Brotherhood is effectively agreeing with street protesters and liberals on the need for the military to leave power at once.

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