Jordan shuts down Muslim Brotherhood offices, due to close more

Published April 16th, 2016 - 09:20 GMT
Jordanians check the main entrance of the Muslim Brotherhood's office in Amman. (AFP/File)
Jordanians check the main entrance of the Muslim Brotherhood's office in Amman. (AFP/File)

Following the closure of the "illegal" Muslim Brotherhood's offices in Amman and Jerash on Wednesday, authorities on Thursday closed the premises of the group in Madaba and Karak, announcing that the rest of such facilities would be closed one by one.

Official sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity on Thursday, said closure of other premises across the Kingdom would follow, in response to complaints filed with respective governor offices by the newly licensed Muslim Brotherhood Society.

The official told The Jordan Times that the Brotherhood premises in Madaba were sealed off Thursday, while in other places, members of the group volunteered to hand over the offices' keys to authorities.

The closure of the offices came in implementation of judicial rulings to transfer properties of the "unlicensed" MB to the rival splinter group that officially registered last year, an official told The Jordan Times on Thursday.

An official source, who asked to remain unnamed, explained that the "illegal" old MB attempted to carry out several activities in these buildings and the newly established Muslim Brotherhood Society reported that to the authorities.

Meanwhile, another official source said on Thursday that authorities would also follow up on the case of the Brotherhood-affiliated Yarmouk Satellite Channel, noting that the channel is broadcasting without licence.

"No one is above the law... this is a country of law," the source said, adding that if the old Muslim Brotherhood group wants to practise activities, it should abide by the Kingdom's laws and be a registered entity.

The Muslim Brotherhood group was considered "illegal" after the registration of the society a year ago, following a first wave of a defection within the movement, led by former overall leader Abdul Majeed Thneibat, whose group posed as the legitimate replacement of the local mother group.

The Muslim Brotherhood group was licensed in 1946 as a charity affiliated with its international mother group in Egypt and was relicensed in 1953 as an Islamic society. Although the group modified its by-laws two months ago, ending its affiliation to Egypt, it is still labelled as "illegal" by authorities, because they were expected to re-register in a new capacity as an NGO.

Following the closure of the movement's offices, Hammam Saeed, the group's overall leader, issued a statement addressing his supporters and charging that this act is an offence that did not take into consideration the country's interests.

He questioned the timing of "starting a battle" against the Islamic movement at a time when Jordan is facing regional challenges.

However, the official stressed that if the old Muslim Brotherhood wants to have activities in the Kingdom they should abide by the country's laws and refrain from "using a language of threats".

By Khetam Malkawi

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