QUESTION: Okay. We have the deputy head of the Muslim Brotherhood in an interview with Al Hayat saying that they don’t regard the peace treaty with Israel as binding, that they didn’t sign it, and if they come to power, they might put it to a referendum. Do you have any reaction to that? Are you – is this something that you’re trying to seek more clarification on from them?
MS. NULAND: Well, we’ve seen this press report. I would say that it is one member of the MB. We have had other assurances from the party with regard to their commitment not only to universal human rights, but to the international obligations that the Government of Egypt has undertaken. As we’ve said again and again, not only with regard to Egypt but with regard to other states in that region in transition, we expect that legitimate parties will not only support universal human rights, but will also (inaudible) continue to support international obligations made by their governments.
QUESTION: So as far as you understand, this isn’t officially the Muslim Brotherhood position that was reflected in that interview. You still think that they are bound to uphold the treaty?
MS. NULAND: We – they have made commitments to us along those regards, and as I said, we will judge these parties by what they do.
...QUESTION: Victoria, a follow-up on Andy’s question on the Muslim Brotherhood. Now, they gave you these assurances in casual conversations, or are they stated policy – the party policy line, or how did they give you their assurances to abide by internationally agreed –
MS. NULAND: Well, let me say that among the reasons that we are trying to meet with different political actors in Egypt, including with the Muslim Brotherhood, is that this isn’t a monolithic organization. None of these groups are monolithic. We want to make sure that we have an open dialogue where we are being clear publicly, but we’re also being clear privately about our hopes and expectations for Egypt’s future, our hopes and expectations that any political actors will respect human rights and will uphold the international obligations of the Egyptian Government. So we have, in that context, had some good reassurances from different interlocutors, and we will continue to seek those kinds of reassurances going forward.
So let's see
- The deputy head of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, Essam Arian, said, "We never promised that we would honor the peace treaty with Israel. The treaty is not sacred and we can and should make changes in it."
- Dr. Rashad Bayoum, Deputy General of the Muslim Brotherhood, said in the Arabic daily al-Hayat that the Muslim Brotherhood will not recognize Israel "under any circumstances."
- Nuland was reduced to saying "we expect that legitimate parties will not only support universal human rights, but will also (inaudible) continue to support international obligations made by their governments."
- Finally all we get from Nuland is "we will judge these parties by what they do." Assuming that rule has been guiding the Obama administration's policy towards Iran, that is not necessarily reassuring.
- If, according to Nuland, the Muslim Brotherhod is "not monolithic"--just how much weight can be given to those assurances to begin with?
US assurances are worthless.
Israel is on its own.
Did anyone really expect anything different?
And don't forget, when it comes to the Muslim Brotherhood, "their commitment not only to universal human rights, but to the international obligations that the Government of Egypt has undertaken" are all suspect--no matter what Obama says to the contrary.
Technorati Tag: Israel and Muslim Brotherhood and Egypt and Victoria Nuland.