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Brotherhood picks moderate leader to manage new stage

By Khetam Malkawi - Jun 13,2016 - Last updated at Jun 13,2016

AMMAN — The Muslim Brotherhood has set up an “interim committee” to steer the group after the government banned the movement from holding internal elections. 

The announcement came late on Saturday, after the Islamic Action Front, the group’s political arm, announced that it would take part in the upcoming parliamentary elections slated for September 20.

Muath Khawaldeh, a Muslim Brotherhood spokesperson, said on Sunday that the interim committee would be in charge of managing the group’s affairs, replacing the executive office that has completed its term.

The group appointed Abdul Hamid Thuneibat to head the interim committee. Thuneibat is regarded as a moderate, in contrast to the organisation’s outgoing overall leader Hammam Saeed. 

For the government, the Muslim Brotherhood is illegal and so is its move to appoint an interim committee.  

A government source who preferred to remain unnamed told The Jordan Times that forming a committee would not change the fact that the group is illegal and not registered in Jordan. 

In March, authorities prevented the Muslim Brotherhood from holding internal elections because the seven-decade-old group is not registered as a local organisation and is considered illegitimate.

Speaking to The Jordan Times at the time, Amman’s Governor Khaled Abu Zeid said: “Any such gathering should be legal and they should be a legal entity to conduct any gathering,” adding that there is another society registered with the same name which is the legal entity.

The governor was referring to a splinter group formed by defectors, the Muslim Brotherhood Society, which is registered and considers itself the legitimate Brotherhood.

 

After authorities closed down Muslim Brotherhood offices in April, some of the group’s properties were handed over to the offshoot entity, in accordance with judicial rulings.

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