Leading Muslim Brotherhood figures on Tuesday said the group has formed committees across the country in coordination with the Salafis and Jama’a al-Islamiya in order to address extremism and avoid incidents like the Rafah attack.
The committee would educate people in mosques and through advocacy caravans.
“We have met with tribal leaders to help the security services monitor any jihadi movement or encounters with strangers so as to protect the Sinai youth from extremism,” said Abdel Rahman al-Shorbagy of the Freedom and Justice Party in North Sinai.
Sabri Khalaf Allah, head of the Muslim Brotherhood’s administrative office in Ismailia, said the committees would preempt any extremist ideas and emphasize that Islam has a moderate approach.
“Through dialogue, the Brotherhood has eliminated any such extremist thought in Ismailia,” he said.
Aboud al-Zomor of Jama’a al-Islamiya said his group gave up violent activity a long time ago.
“It was an inevitable response to the excesses of the former corrupt regime,” he said of Jama’a al-Islamiya’s past violent acts. “But it is no longer appropriate.”
“We support the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafi initiative to educate the people on moderation,” he said. “But we are not yet sure of the involvement of Islamists in the Rafah terrorist attack.”
Zomor suspected the involvement of Israel in the incident. “They knew of it before it took place,” he said, also pointing to other incidents that he said are meant to derail the new president’s projects, such as the frequent power cuts and the Dahshur sectarian strife.
Abdel Akhar Hammad, mufti of Jama’a al-Islamiya, called on Al-Azhar to regain the trust it has lost among the younger generation, as he put it, and explain to them the true Islam.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm