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Egypt Islamists Shun Calls for Feb. 11 Civil Disobedience

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, whose members control the largest voting bloc in the country’s newly elected parliament, said it rejects calls by political activists for civil disobedience on Feb. 11.

Groups including the April 6 Youth Movement, which led protests that ousted President Hosni Mubarak a year ago, are calling for people to stay home on Feb. 11 to demand the transfer of power to civilians from the country’s ruling military council. The planned day of strike action marks the first anniversary of Mubarak’s departure.

The call for civil disobedience means halting railways, transportation, factories, schools and stopping tax and utilities payments, compounding the country’s economic slump, Mahmoud Hussein, the Muslim Brotherhood’s secretary general said in an e-mailed statement today. The group “rejects this call,” he said.

The ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces has ignored protester demands since a mass protest on Jan. 25 to hold early presidential elections, now scheduled for mid-June, or transfer executive powers to parliament. Calls for the council to step down intensified after more than 70 people were killed last week at a soccer match when crowds invaded the football field, sparking clashes between protesters and police in Cairo.

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