Islamists in Egypt unite to stave off opposition

Seven parties move to protect Morsi's gov't from increasing protests following police strike, protests and calls for coup.

March 10, 2013 17:47
1 minute read.
Anti-Morsi protesters stand on a riot police vehicle, January 28, 2013.

Egypt Port Said ICONIC protestors, police, palace 370. (photo credit: Reuters/Mohamad Mohamed Abd El Ghany)

Seven Islamist parties in Egypt have moved to protect the Muslim Brotherhood-led government from increasing protests, which threaten the movement’s hold on power.

The parties formed the Umma (“Islamic nation”) Alliance to protect the “achievements of the January 25 Revolution” and stand against those who interrupt the “constitutional path that allows people to choose their ruler,” Ahram Online reported.

The parties, at a press conference on Saturday, said that they saw “clear dangers” because of the recent protests, the police strike, and calls for the army to carry out a coup to replace President Mohamed Morsi, according to the report.

The alliance consists of the Salafist Raya party, the Reform party, the Asala (“Authenticity”) party, the People’s party, the Islamic party, the Fadila (“Virtue”) party and the New Labor party.

They also are demanding a revised timetable for elections since Egypt’s administrative court canceled the planned April 22 vote. The Umma Alliance called on all parties to join it to “protect the rights of the people.”

Meanwhile, an important Salafi leader of the Raya party, Hazem Salah Abu Ismail, tried to tie the opposition protests to foreign powers, warning about a “scheme of global powers to sabotage the country,” according to the Egypt Independent website.

This comes after Ahram Online reported last month that there were divisions within the Islamist bloc, with the second largest party, Islamist Nour, disagreeing with the Muslim Brotherhood government on some matters. It is yet to be seen if all the Islamist parties will unite to stave off any threat to the government’s hold on power.

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