UK PM Orders Inquiry Into Muslim Brotherhood
April 1, 2014
By Damien McElroy
Conservative MP warns UK ban on Muslim Brotherhood 'could aid al-Qaeda'
As David Cameron orders inquiry into Egyptian organisation, Crispin Blunt, a former justice minister, warns that putting it on the terror list without sufficient evidence could have serious consequences
10:28PM BST 01 Apr 2014
David Cameron has ordered an inquiry into Muslim Brotherhood's "philosophy and activities" that will assess information from MI5 and MI6 on its potential terrorism links.
The review, which is due to report by the end of Parliament's summer recess, is being conducted by Sir John Jenkins, the British ambassador in Riyadh.
But a Conservative MP has warned the inquiry could backfire if the organisation was wrongly proscribed for having links to terror. Crispin Blunt, a former justice minister, said Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states felt a direct political threat from the Brotherhood.
He said British officials had a duty to determine that its leadership was not instigating or planning violent actions in Egypt or elsewhere, but warned: "A misapplied policy could drive its followers into the arms of al-Qaeda.
"The worst possible thing would be a fit-up job that listed the Muslim Brotherhood on the terrorist list with little or no evidence. It would be a betrayal of our values and make the problem worse."
The Prime Minister said the review was prompted by evidence that Brotherhood leaders met in London last year to plot their response to the coup in Egypt.