Brotherhood leaders slam Kerry’s comments

A Muslim Brotherhood official slammed comments made this week by US Secretary of State John Kerry, in which he praised Egypt’s military and slammed the Islamist group for “stealing the revolution.” 

Mahmoud Hussein, secretary general of the Muslim Brotherhood, said in a statement published on Friday by the group’s mouthpiece, the Freedom and Justice portal, that Kerry’s comments were “strange.” 

“[Kerry’s] statement changes the truth and ignores registered facts not only by the Brotherhood but also by their opponents,” Hussein claimed.

He called on Kerry’s aides to read him the newspapers published since January 25, 2011, or to translate interviews where Egypt’s liberals attested to the courage of the Brothers during the 18-day uprising, which he claimed was instrumental to ousting former President Hosni Mubarak.

Kerry should remember that the Brothers reached Parliament and the presidency in free and fair elections under the helm of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces and the monitoring of American groups, such as the monitoring body helmed by former US President Jimmy Carter, Hussein argued.

Kerry’s statement, published on the State Department website, stirred speculation about the US administration’s ambiguity towards Egypt. The ouster of President Mohamed Morsi in July by the military following mass protests and the deadly crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood protest camps in August triggered condemnation from the US administration, but these condemnations have been worded cautiously.

In an article published by the Daily Beast on Tuesday, a US government official said that Kerry is defying the White House’s stance on Egypt. The paper claims that Kerry was asked by National Security Adviser Susan Rice to take a firm stance on Egypt and particularly on Morsi’s incarceration and trial, but he ignored her recommendations during his talks in Cairo.

Some media reports highlighted the statements in the context of the Egyptian government’s efforts to improve the country’s international image through diplomatic and public relations channels.

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