WASHINGTON, Jan. 12, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — On January 9, U.S. Representative Mario Diaz Balart (R-FL), introduced a bill (H.R. 377) to require the Secretary of State to submit a report to Congress on the designation of the Muslim Brotherhood as a foreign terrorist organization. The following day, U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) introduced an identical bill (S. 68) in the Senate titled the The Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act.

The House bill was referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary and already has twenty cosponsors. The Senate bill was referred to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and has three original cosponsors.

Senator Cruz stated, “The U.S. has officially listed individual members, branches, and charities of the Muslim Brotherhood as terrorists, such as Hamas, al Qaeda, and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, but has not designated the organization as a whole. The intent of the Brotherhood is stated within its Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Brotherhood in North America; “The process of settlement is a Civilization-Jihad process…The Ikhwan [Muslim Brotherhood] must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers…”

Rep. Diaz Balart shared with Coptic Solidarity, “Religious freedom is a fundamental right, yet the Muslim Brotherhood continues to incite violence and threaten others for their religious beliefs and practices.  This bill would impose tough sanctions on a hateful group that has spawned extremist movements throughout the Middle East. The Muslim Brotherhood continues to support terrorist organizations that are responsible for acts of violence around the world. Designating the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization is an important step in defeating terrorism.”

Both Senator Cruz and Rep. Diaz Balart introduced similar bills in the 114th Session. The House version was passed by the Judiciary Committee but neither made it to a floor vote.

Coptic Solidarity applauds Senator Cruz and Congressman Diaz Balart for their persistence to ensure this important designation is made.

It is unconscionable that the United States still has not made this designation when countries such as Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries, as well as Russia, have all declared the Muslim Brotherhood to be a terrorist organization, and a report by the UK House of Commons reached a similar conclusion.

Coptic Solidarity president, Dr. George Gurguis, states “The Muslim Brotherhood poses a threat not only to Copts but to the entire Egyptian society and the West, and seeks to undermine the work of the last two revolutions.”

It is time for the U.S. Government to finally acknowledge the Muslim Brotherhood for what it is; a terrorist organization whose ideology inspired all murderous Jihadist organizations in the world, and which pursues a subversive strategy to establish an Islamic caliphate worldwide. Indeed, the war against Islamist terrorism cannot be won without combating the ideology behind it.

Coptic Solidarity urges individuals to send a message to their federal legislators asking them to: 1) Cosponsor S. 68 & H.R. 377 and 2) Support the bill when it is brought to a full floor vote.

Coptic Solidarity has provided a letter which individuals can submit directly to their federal legislators. Individuals can edit the letter and after providing an address, the message will be directed to the correct U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative.

Cosponsors of S. 68

Sen. Hatch, Orrin [R-UT]

Sen. Inhofe, James [R-OK]

Sen. Roberts, Pat [R-KS]

Cosponsors of H.R. 377

Rep. Gohmert, Louie [R-TX-1]

Rep. Granger, Kay [R-TX-12]

Rep. Frelinghuysen, Rodney P. [R-NJ-11]      

Rep. Weber, Randy K., Sr. [R-TX-14]

Rep. Ros-Lehtinen, Ileana [R-FL-27]

Rep. Fleischmann, Charles J. “Chuck” [R-TN-3]

Rep. Grothman, Glenn [R-WI-6]

Rep. Duncan, Jeff [R-SC-3]

Rep. Black, Diane [R-TN-6]|

Rep. McCaul, Michael T. [R-TX-10]

Rep. Trott, David A. [R-MI-11]

Rep. DesJarlais, Scott [R-TN-4]

Rep. Cramer, Kevin [R-ND-At Large]

Rep. Barletta, Lou [R-PA-11]

Rep. Hudson, Richard [R-NC-8]

Rep. Posey, Bill [R-FL-8]

Rep. Ross, Dennis A. [R-FL-15]

Rep. King, Steve [R-IA-4]

Rep. Rouzer, David [R-NC-7]

Rep. Yoder, Kevin [R-KS-3]

Coptic Solidarity is an organization seeking to help minorities, particularly the Copts, of Egypt and we support those in Egypt working for upholding values of freedom, equality, and the protection of the fundamental rights of all Egyptian citizens. It advocates in cooperation with the affiliated organizations in Canada and in Europe (Solidarité Copte). For more information, contact Lindsay Vessey at 801-512-1713 or coptadvocacy@copticsolidarity.org 

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