• December 13, 2006
  • 5 minutes read

El-Erian: Political Reform at Stake

El-Erian: Political Reform at Stake

After seven months behind bars, Essam El-Erian, the top leader and political bureau chief in the Muslim Brotherhood, was released. He had this an interview with Ikhwanweb.

About his arrest, Al Erian says that he was arrested in the middle of the street while he was supporting the judges to realize their demands of a political reform, independence of the judiciary, a separation between authorities and achieving a real independence of the Egyptian justice.

Al Erian pointed out that his detention was renewed 13 time without any legal basis, although the emergency law that has been and is still dominating Egypt for 25 years stipulates that the utmost period of provisional detention is only 60 days; however, my detention continued for full seven months under the nose of even the emergency law from which people are suffering; this continuous renewal aimed ate keeping my behind bars for the longest possible period of time.

Concerning targeting the political section in particular during the detentions following the demonstrations in solidarity with the judges, Al Erian denied that the target of these detentions is the political section in particular as ” the detentions included many members in the group; it included teachers, Marsa Matrouh group and other issues, in order to stop paralyze the MB group’s activities in general and curb the group’s role, not specifically the political section.

Regarding the situation inside prison, Al Erian said that the treatment was good to some extent, but “definitely to feel that you live inside a prison without committing any crime and offence is painful, I just exercised my natural right of demanding reform and applying a real democracy.

Al Erian denied reports that the Muslim Brotherhood and intellectuals did nothing to demand his release, saying ” many writers and politicians demanded releasing my and they supported me; this is actually a very good step and a good indication that the relation between the political powers is entering new stages, a cooperation regardless of disagreements on targets; this is a big leap in itself towards the opposition unity in the political reform demands.

Al Erian denied also that there is any deal between the Muslim Brotherhood and the government to release him, raising his eyebrows at such rumours because ” if there was any deal, we wouldn’t have remained in prison for seven months; the presence of any deal is absurd and completely false.

The MB political leader said that the Egyptian regime deals with the opposition through force and arrogance as ” the regime initiated several dialogues with the opposition parties but it did not respond to any of their demands; what does the Muslim Brotherhood possess to make the regime holds a deal according to which it releases Al Erian and Mursi.

Concerning the Muslim Brotherhood’s reported fading tone towards demanding a political reform and that it stopped the demonstrations demanding reform, Al Erian said that the Muslim Brotherhood’s voice hasn’t faded, but its activities vary, change and develop according to circumstances in the region.

He pointed out that the Muslim Brotherhood’s voice was very clear and they participated with great efficiency in both the student unions, the free student unions and also in the labor elections and the flagrant rigging that they witnessed; add to this participating in the recent demonstrations of the workers of Ghazl Al Mahala company in which the government accused the Muslim Brotherhood of standing behind them; if the Muslim Brotherhood can support 27000 workers to get their rights, this is very good; the Muslim Brotherhood’s demands for the reform will not stop and it will continue till it achieves hopes of the Egyptian people to lead an honorable life and have a sound democratic regime.

Al Erian added that the main point isn’t that the Muslim Brotherhood take to and remain in the streets; the main point is activating the Egyptian people to demand their rights and “I think that current circumstances aren’t suitable for taking to the streets, as was the case in May 2005.

About the future of the political reform in Egypt, Al Erian said the future political reform is very bad because the political reform is lagging behind; “we thought after last year’s incidents that there will be a real political reform, but after many measures ( postponing Municipalities, striking off names of candidates in the student elections, rigging the labor elections and finally the proposed constitutional amendments that aim at reinforcing and strengthening the authority of the Egyptian regime against opposition); all these measures confirm that the current Egyptian regime will not accept any real political reform.

Regarding the future of the region under the current circumstances and situations Al Erian said that it is difficult to predict the future of the region in such circumstances; this is because the region lives in a foggy grey state; there is a sectarian war in Iraq, demonstrations in Lebanon, Darfur incidents in Sudan; the region is on the threshold of a new phase which is still not clear.