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The election of Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsy would raise more concerns with Arab Gulf governments than anywhere else in the world, said a former Egyptian Foreign Ministry official Wednesday.
But former Assistant Foreign Minister Sayed Qassem said the concerns will not last long if Morsy is elected. Any new president will be committed to the wishes of the Egyptian people, who will not accept a leader who spoils relations with other countries, particularly those in the Gulf, he said.
In an interview with Saudi-owned Al Arabiya satellite channel, Qassem added that the results of the presidential election's first round showed that Egyptian laborers and other expatriates in the Gulf support the Brotherhood, raising concerns among governments of those countries. He added that should Morsy win, the Brotherhood will work to address these fears as soon as he assumes power.
Qassem added that Egypt, the rest of the Arab world and Iran are more similar than they are different. He emphasized that Gulf governments would feel reassured by the election of Shafiq, who they believe would continue the Mubarak regime's foreign policies.
Hassan Abu Taleb, an expert at Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies, said Gulf countries are primarily concerned about Egypt's future political orientation.
The revolution was endorsed by all Egyptians, he added, rejecting the idea that the revolution can be "exported" to other countries.
He added that Gulf countries do not allow labor issues to affect bilateral relations with Egypt.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm