"The New York Times" reports that US President Barack Obama believes that the Muslim Brotherhood should participate in the political process in Egypt. White House advisors made clear that they did not rule out engagement with the Muslim Brotherhood, an organization that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak suppressed, as part of an orderly process.
The report followed the White House's disappointment that Mubarak, in his taped speech last night, while agreeing not to run for reelection in the scheduled presidential elections in September, did not offer to step down before then. In response to the speech, Obama said that "an orderly transition must be meaningful, it must be peaceful, and it must begin now". A top administration official later told correspondents, "The emphasis is on the word 'now'."
The option to approach the Muslim Brotherhood came during a meeting of over a dozen foreign policy experts at the White House on Monday. The meeting, led by deputy national security adviser for strategic communications Benjamin Rhodes, and two other National Security Council officials, Daniel Shapiro and Samantha Power, examined unrest in the region, and the potential for the protests to spread.
"The New York Times" quotes participants as saying that White House staff members said that Mr. Obama believed that Egyptian politics needed to encompass 'non-secular' parties: diplomatic-speak for the Muslim Brotherhood.
In Egypt, Mubarak's speech did not calm the demonstrators across the country. Cairo is bracing for more demonstrations against Mubarak today, the ninth day. The demonstrators are demanding that Mubarak step down immediately.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on February 2, 2011
© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2011