Below is a press statement on behalf of the Muslim Brotherhood in response to Prime Minister David Cameron’s announcement that the government will launch an investigation into their UK activities.
“It has been reported that the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom has ordered a review into the Muslim Brotherhood.
The Muslim Brotherhood is a lawful organisation which promotes the rule of law and democracy in the many countries in which it has a presence. It does not engage in or promote acts of violence in order to achieve its aims.
The Muslim Brotherhood openly engaged in the 2012 democratic elections in Egypt which resulted in the election of the first democratically elected President of Egypt. In 2013 following the coup d’état and the illegal detention of the President and members of the government the Muslim Brotherhood opposed the coup by engaging in peaceful protests and sit-ins.
The illegitimate military regime in Egypt responded, to the many thousands that had gathered to peacefully oppose the coup, with unrestrained violence resulting in the unlawful killing of over 2,000 people and the detention of over 20,000 Egyptians.
The military regime continues to enforce control through the use of violence and repression which has been described as “unprecedented in Egypt’s modern political history,” drawing international condemnation. It has used the pretence of legal proceedings to suppress freedom of speech by prosecuting journalists and sentencing to death political opponents in their hundreds at a time.
Despite the well documented illegal acts of the military regime the Muslim Brotherhood continues to promote peaceful resistance. It is important that the people of Egypt are allowed to return to democracy through non-violent means.
The Muslim Brotherhood fully supports the diplomatic and legal measures being taken to bring justice to the Egyptian people in international jurisdictions. It continues to support the dialogue between the members of President Morsi’s democratically elected Government and the many Governments currently engaging with it.
The Muslim Brotherhood welcomes all opportunities to engage with Governments in order to bring a better understanding about the aims and methods of the Muslim Brotherhood and how it intends to return Egypt to a democratic and civil society.
The Muslim Brotherhood intends to openly engage with the British Government’s review and will make representations to assist the Government’s inquiry into the organisation’s philosophy and values, its policies and its track record both in and out of Government. The Muslim Brotherhood has engaged former Director of Public Prosecutions, Lord Macdonald of River Glaven QC, and ITN solicitors to advise it in this process.
It is essential that such an important process is conducted fairly. The Muslim Brotherhood has concerns about the appointment of Britain’s Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Sir John Jenkins, to lead the review. It is important that the British Government does not bend to pressure from foreign Governments who are concerned about their own people’s quest for democracy. It is hard to see how Sir John Jenkins will be able to conduct an independent internal review of the Muslim Brotherhood and carry his brief as Ambassador to a non- democratic regime that is openly in political opposition to the Muslim Brotherhood.
It should be understood that whilst the Muslim Brotherhood is prepared to engage with the British Government’s review the Muslim Brotherhood will challenge, through the British courts, any improper attempt to restrict its activity.
In addition to the review into our organisation we ask that the British Government considers the very many well documented and serious human rights abuses being conducted by the military regime in Egypt. The British Government should be cautious not to allow this review to be seen as an endorsement of the criminal acts which continue to be perpetrated against the people of Egypt.”