Syria’s President welcomes the end of the Muslim Brotherhood government in Egypt as he fight rebels in his own country.
Syrian President Bashar al Assad has hailed the fall of “political Islam” in Egypt as he fights an armed opposition movement at home.
“What is happening in Egypt is the fall of what is known as political Islam,” Assad said in an interview with Syrian state newspaper Ath Thawra, excerpts of which were posted on an official Facebook page.
“Anywhere in the world, whoever uses religion for political aims, or to benefit some and not others, will fall.
“You can’t fool all the people all the time, let alone the Egyptian people who have a civilisation that is thousands of years old, and who espouse clear, Arab nationalist thought.
“After a whole year, reality has become clear to the Egyptian people. The Muslim Brotherhood’s performance has helped them see the lies the (movement) used at the start of the popular revolution in Egypt.”
Egypt’s President, Mohamed Morsi – who was forced from power by a military coup just a year after being elected – had recently called for a “holy war” in Syria during a rally he attended with Sunni leaders.
The two-year uprising against the rule of Assad’s family – which is largely secular but from the Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shia Islam – has largely pitted rebels from the country’s Sunni majority against the regime.
There is long-standing animosity between Damascus and the Muslim Brotherhood, of which Mr Morsi is a leader, and membership in the group has been punishable by death in Syria since the 1980s.
Assad’s late father, Hafez al-Assad, used the military to crush an armed insurgency against his rule led by the Muslim Brotherhood, killing many thousands in the conservative city of Hama.
The city became a centre of the demonstrations against the younger Assad in March 2011.
The Syrian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood today plays a key role in the exiled opposition National Coalition, which is recognised by more than 100 states and organisations as legitimate representative of the Syrian people.
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