x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 July 2017

Khalfan in new attack on Muslim Brotherhood

Police chief says tweets by Muslim Brotherhood members are aimed at 'creating chaos' and are part of a scheme to establish an Islamist state.

DUBAI // Dubai's police chief yesterday repeated his claim that members of the Muslim Brotherhood were using social media to destabilise the Gulf states.

Islamist extremists are posting messages on Facebook and Twitter "for political reasons and to create instability", Lt Gen Dahi Khalfan Tamim told the Dubai Judicial Institute.

He said tweets by Brotherhood members were aimed at "creating chaos" and were part of a scheme to establish an Islamist state.

This month Gen Tamim accused the Muslim Brotherhood of seeking power in Gulf states, and on Sunday he told a Kuwaiti newspaper that the attempted takeover would begin in Kuwait.

After the police chief's speech yesterday the institute's head, Judge Jamal Al Sumaiti, pointed out that the authors of insults published in social media were liable to prosecution under the law. "Twitter is considered to be public - many people can see and read the insults."

He said judges were using Articles 372 and 263 of the penal code to deal with such offences, which attracted prison sentences of up to two years and fines of up to Dh20,000, but he also called for updated legislation to take more account of social media.

salamir@thenational.ae