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Splinter Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood faction gets government green light Open in fullscreen

Mohammad al-Fadilat

Splinter Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood faction gets government green light

The legal status of the existing Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan is unclear [AFP]

Date of publication: 3 March, 2015

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Analysis: Abdul Majid al-Thunaibat, the faction's leader, denies the move is a 'coup' against the existing Brotherhood organisation but says his group is now the legally recognised representative of the Muslim Brotherhood movement in Jordan.
A splinter group of the Jordanian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood has officially registered itself with the government, cutting its ties with the parent organisation in Egypt and calling into question the status of the existing Muslim Brotherhood organisation in Jordan.

On Tuesday, the Jordanian Ministry of Social Development agreed to register the "Muslim Brotherhood association" based on an application submitted by Abdul Majid al-Thunaibat, the expelled former comptroller general of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan.

"We are now the representatives of the Muslim Brotherhood. The existing group or the group that existed before is no longer legal, since we now have the legal capacity," Thunaibat told al-Araby al-Jadeed.

Thunaibat stressed the existing structure of the Brotherhood was no longer legitimate and had effectively been disbanded.


Jordan's Brotherhood: 'We'll be here for ever'. Read more.





"Those who want to be with us under the new name are welcome. Those who want to remain as they are must sort their problem out with the government."

But the decision taken by the Associations Registrar to approve the Brotherhood breakaway group as a new organisation does not immediately affect the legal status existing Muslim Brotherhood movement in Jordan, said Fawaz al-Ratrout, spokesman of the ministry of social development.

Tampering with the legal status of the group and its stable organisational position is a gamble
- Muslim Brotherhood Shura Council

Ratrout said the group was registered as a political association, which under the law places it under the jurisdiction and supervision of the Ministry of Political Affairs.


The issues around the existing Brotherhood organisation and its fate, and whether or not a provisional leadership would be appointed by the newly licensed group would most likely be decided by the ministry of political affairs, said Ratrout.

Divided movement

The Muslim Brotherhood expelled Thunaibat almost two weeks ago, based on the decision of its Shura Council to expel anyone who attempted to relicense the group.

Thunaibat, however, noted that the assets and funds of the existing Muslim Brotherhood would be under the control of the new group, which he leads.

Speaking to al-Araby, Thunaibat refused to characterise the seizing of legal control of the movement as a "coup", stressing it was merely a "correction of the legal status in accordance with Jordanian law".

We are now the representatives of the Muslim Brotherhood. The existing group... is no longer legal
- Abdul Majid al-Thunaibat

Thunaibat justified his move by saying the group's 1946 licence was incompatible with current Jordanian law, which made the Muslim Brotherhood virtually non-existent since it is a chapter of the disbanded Egyptian parent organisation.

However, this claim was countered last week by Hammam Said, the Brotherhood's comptroller-general, who said the group would continue to exist, and that it did not need a government licence.

At an emergency session held on Monday evening, the Shura Council of the existing Muslim Brotherhood condemned what it called efforts to "correct" the group's legal status without the approval of its legitimate and elected leadership - and in contradiction with established norms.

"Tampering with the legal status of the group and its stable organisational position is a gamble that will have a profound effect on Jordan before it does any damage to the group," read a statement from the Shura Council.

The former chairman of the Bar Association, Saleh Armouti, said the decision issued by the Associations Registrar was purely administrative, and could be appealed by the executive bureau of the Muslim Brotherhood in the Administrative Court within 60 days.

This is an edited translation from our Arabic editon.

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