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Egypt rejects Qatari offer to mediate between government and banned Muslim Brotherhood group

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CAIRO — Egypt has rejected an offer by Qatar to mediate with the banned Muslim Brotherhood group, focus of a government crackdown since the ouster of Egypt's Islamist president in 2013.

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ahmed Abu-Zeid said Sunday that Egypt does not accept any external interference in its internal affairs, underlining that authorities have declared the Brotherhood a terrorist organization.

Speaking by telephone, he says that "any third-party intervention or mediation is not acceptable."

Qatari Foreign Minister Khalid bin Mohammed al-Attiyah told Al-Araby al-Youm TV last week that Qatar is ready to act as a mediator "to bring viewpoints closer." He added that Doha does not consider the Brotherhood to be terrorists and sees their status with the government as "a political dispute" that will delay the country's path forward.

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