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Egyptian Minister Postpones Dissolution of the Muslim Brotherhood

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[The Washington Post]
Amr Abdallah Dalsh/Reuters -  A man walks past graffiti depicting ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi and others in downtown Cairo on Sept. 24.

Amr Abdallah Dalsh/Reuters – A man walks past graffiti depicting ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi and others in downtown Cairo on Sept. 24.

CAIRO — An Egyptian minister said Tuesday that the government would “postpone” the court-ordered dissolution of the Muslim Brotherhood, according to the state-run Middle East News Agency.

The statement comes after an obscure court issued a sweeping but legally questionable decision Monday to ban the Muslim Brotherhood and all related organizations and activities, which appears to grant the military-backed government expansive legal authority to go after the group’s finances and other assets and essentially criminalizes its political and social service work.

Legal experts said the contradictory decisions reflect division within the government over how to deal with the 85-year-old Islamist organization, even as a brutal crackdown against it continues.

“This means that there is no unified decision within the government” to ban the Brotherhood, said Ziad Abdel Tawab, deputy director of the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Study. “It is very apparent that there is a wing of the government negotiating with them and others willing to use security measures until the end against the Brotherhood.”

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