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Seven senior Brotherhood members asked to leave Qatar
Saturday September 13, 2014 9:58 PM, IANS

Seven senior members of the Muslim Brotherhood, the group from which ousted Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi hails, have been asked to leave Qatar, media reported Saturday.

"Some members of the Muslim Brotherhood and its political wing, the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), who have been asked by the authorities to leave Qatar, have now welcomed that request," Xinhua cited the official Ahram on-line website as quoting senior Brotherhood figure Amr Darrag.

Qatar has been a staunch ally of Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood and backed his government with about $7 billion in aid.

However, after Morsi's ouster by the army in July 2013, the Gulf state came under great pressure from other Gulf countries, notably Saudi Arabia and the UAE, to stop supporting the Islamist group in Egypt and elsewhere in the region.

Senior Brotherhood figures asked to leave Qatar include Mahmoud Hussein, the group's secretary-general who is believed to be the Brotherhood's de facto leader after the arrest and imprisonment of its supreme guide Mohammed Badie, as well as Islamic preacher Wagdi Ghoneim.

Darrag, former minister of international cooperation under Morsi's rule, who himself is among Brotherhood leaders asked to leave Qatar, said the move was meant "to avoid causing any embarrassment for the state of Qatar, which we found to be a very welcoming and supporting host".

In March, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain announced they had withdrawn their envoys from Doha to protest what they said was interference in their "internal affairs".

The Muslim Brotherhood did not give further details on the new destination for its senior leadership, but the daily al-Masry al-Youm reported that they would leave for Britain, Turkey and Malaysia.

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