Egypt Independent

Jama’a al-Islamiya seeks Islamist alliance outside of main parties

Jama'a al-Islamiya will not join forces with the two most prominent Islamist parties — the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party and the Nour Party — and is instead mulling an alliance of smaller groups for upcoming parliamentary elections, a group leader said Monday.

Members of Jama'a al-Islamiya's Construction and Development Party are expected to convene Monday to discuss the prospects for an Islamist alliance that would include the Fadila, Asala, Watan and Islamic parties, group leader Tarek al-Zomor said.

Islamic Party Secretary General Mohamed Abu Samra said the Freedom and Justice Party and President Mohamed Morsy's performance have disappointed Islamists.

He said his party is engaging in negotiations to form an alliance that will counter secular efforts with Jama'a Islamiya, the Watan Party and the Hazemoun, supporters of former Salafi presidential candidate Hazem Salah Abu Ismail.

The FJP and the Nour Party together controlled a majority in the previous Parliament before the lower house was dissolved last year, when a court ruled its election unconstitutional. The Islamist parties also dominate the upper house, the Shura Council, which holds temporary legislative powers until a new lower house is elected.

FJP leaders have said the party expects to take an outright majority of seats in the next vote.

No date has been set for elections, which are expected this spring.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm