Deputy Supreme Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood Khairat al-Shater traveled to Doha on Monday for talks with Qatari officials about recent developments in the region. The visit will last for few days.
An informed source who was with Shater at Cairo International Airport said talks “will tackle coordination between Qatar and the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party on developments in Egypt and the Arab region.”
The formerly outlawed Muslim Brotherhood is now trying to normalize diplomatic relations with its neighbors, in part to solicit the funds Gulf countries promised Egypt following the country’s uprising that deposed former President Hosni Mubarak.
Qatar promised Egypt investments of US$10 billion in the weeks following Mubarak’s handover of power, but has failed to deliver, citing instability.
The Muslim Brotherhood has been accused of accepting funding from abroad, particularly Gulf countries, but leaders have denied that, saying that the group is entirely internally funded.
A leading member of the group, Mahmoud Abdel Gawwad, recently said group members pay 7.5 percent of their monthly incomes to fund the group.
Largely made up of middle-class Egyptians, the group imposes the same rate across the board regardless of a member’s profession.
Some have called for the group’s finances to come under greater scrutiny as the government continues its examination of other organizations in the country for their funding and activities.
Mohamed Saeed al-Shazly, head of the regional union for NGOs in Gharbiya, said the Brotherhood “is not licensed by the government, like all other organizations that stand trial in the funding case. There should be equality among everyone.”
Some Gulf leaders also remain wary of forming close ties with the Brotherhood, fearing its branches in their own countries could breed unrest.
Gulf officials have said they require clear assurances from the Brotherhood that it will not seek to “export the revolution” to the Gulf and that any Muslim Brotherhood-backed government in Egypt will not compromise Gulf security.
Brotherhood officials have said they have no designs of spreading revolt and that Gulf instability would not be in their interest.