Muslim Brotherhood Banned in Egypt

A court in Egypt banned the Muslim Brotherhood on Monday. The court’s decision how gives the government license to suppress the Islamist group that was once very powerful.

The organization will now be forced to return its prior operational means and operate underground.

The Court of Urgent Matters in Cairo banned all Brotherhood activities and those of all organizations derived from it. The group’s assets were ordered to be seized by authorities. The decision would be appealed said the lawyers from the Brotherhood.

The verdict by the court was not a surprise and was for the most part symbolic, as the government has cracked down already on the organization. The Brotherhood has done well operating illegally under a number of autocratic rulers for the majority of its 85 years of existence.

However, the decision by the court gives the government a formal legal means to expand its robust pursuit of the thousands of Brotherhood leaders and its rank and file members.

The decision on Monday might offer the government that is backed by the military a license to surpass the heavy-handed police tactics, which have allowed successive secular government to keep the group in check.

Under ex President Hosni Mubarak, the Brotherhood openly operated but illegally under an understanding that it would cut back its operations if it became too powerful.

However, the ruling on Monday takes it a step further and places the interim cabinet in Egypt closer to dissolving the Brotherhood completely, but widening the legal arms the government is able to deploy in fighting against the group.

The legal language in the court’s decision is very broad and gives prosecutors a wider leeway to arrest members, freeze accounts in banks and seized assets.

No one except the Brotherhood is sure how much property or money the organization has and what is its source of great wealth.

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