No Islamic State In Egypt, SCAF Says

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CAIRO, July 27 (UPI) — Members of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt aren’t trying to set up an Islamic state in the country, a member of the ruling military council said.

Muslim Brotherhood members campaigned in last year’s election under the slogan “Islam is the Solution.” Its candidates took 20 percent of the seats in parliamentary elections in 2005 and have solidified their political footing in post-revolution Egypt through its Freedom and Justice Party.

Egyptian Maj. Gen. Said el-Assar, a member of the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, in an effort to address concerns about the Muslim Brotherhood’s intentions in Egypt, said fears of an Islamic state are unfounded.

“They are not seeking to have a religious country,” he was quoted by Egyptian news agency Bikya Masr as saying. “They have to have the same rights as all Egyptians.”

Egyptians protesters have returned to Cairo’s central square to express their frustration with the pace of post-revolution reforms. SCAF delayed the country’s parliamentary elections to late 2011, meaning presidential elections and constitutional reforms might not develop until 2012.

The Muslim Brotherhood said it has no intention of fielding a presidential candidate, though some of its members have broken rank to compete. The Muslim Brotherhood and the Wafd Party are among the most widely recognized political authorities in Egypt.

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