Morsi would if he thought he could get away with it.
Rifai Taha, the former president of Gamaa Islamiyya’s Shura council in Egypt, said that al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri should be praised and called on Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi to allow Zawahiri’s return to Egypt.
In an interview with Al-Hayat, Taha spoke of his relationship with late al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Taha said that bin Laden refused to target Americans in Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Bin Laden said to some of his companions — among them Taha — who were preparing a strike against the United States to force it to release Gamaa Islamiyya’s “emir,” Dr. Omar Abdel Rahman, that “preserving security and stability in Saudi Arabia, Yemen and the Arab states serves Islam and the nature of the battle with the United States.” Taha considers al-Qaeda members mujahideen [holy Islamic warriors].
Taha rejects any armed action in Egypt “at this stage.” He criticized what happened in the Sinai and refused to call the perpetrators of the recent attacks “jihadists.” He called on all Islamists to rally behind President Morsi so that the Islamic project is achieved. He said that Morsi “will implement God’s rule on Earth.”
Taha insisted on the application of Shariah [Islamic] law in Egypt and divided the liberals who refused Shariah into two groups. The first reject Sharia because they don’t know what it is, he said. For those, Taha said there is a duty to introduce them to Shariah.