News from the Arab Press

The Brotherhood’s Plot To Raise Food Prices In Egypt

By Asaf Zilberfarb | The Media Line

November 6, 2018

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Al-Watan, Egypt, November 2

Throughout its quest for power, the Muslim Brotherhood invested great efforts in establishing an economic infrastructure that would support its activities, especially in countries in which it had a heavy presence. In Egypt, for example, the Brotherhood established large economic entities, from hospitals and grocery stores to schools and nurseries. These projects required millions, if not billions, of dollars, which the Brotherhood skillfully hid from authorities in order to avoid surveillance and taxation. With time, a large portion of the Egyptian public came to rely on the Brotherhood’s services on a daily basis, making the movement an indispensable part of Egyptian society. This became especially noticeable after the ousting of former president Muhammad Morsi and the election of a non-Brotherhood president. As soon as the organization lost its dream of empowerment, the Brotherhood began pursuing a new strategy of punishing the Egyptian public for its decision to support the new government of President Abdel al-Fattah al-Sisi. Brotherhood members began monetizing many of their services. In some regions of Egypt, Brotherhood institutions denied services to individuals who were not explicit Sisi opponents. The strategy was simple: to create a permanent state of frustration and anger among the Egyptian people, which could undermine the stability of the new regime. Indeed, in the past few weeks these efforts escalated even further. A potato shortage in the country caused prices of basic food commodities in Egypt to double over the course of just a few days. Grocery stores were emptied of basic supplies within just a few hours. However, following a quick investigation, authorities soon discovered that Brotherhood-backed trading groups have purchased potatoes en masse and hid them in warehouses across the country, all in an effort to create an artificial shortage that would inflate food prices. This form of financial terror is no different from the Brotherhood’s other techniques of intimidation and violence. A group that acts so flagrantly against the interests of the public cannot represent or care about the people of Egypt. –Muhammad Salah

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