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Individuals close to the Muslim Brotherhood, even those who fled the country, may be invited to the dialogue..

The National Dialogue Administration revealed the names of the 19-member board of trustees for the national dialogue, which was supposed to begin during the first week of July but now looks set to be delayed.

The administration says that the board was formed following 20 days of consultations with political and trade union forces. It includes several members of parliament, newspaper editors and journalists, professors, and human rights lawyer Negad El Borai, among others.

An unnamed member of the Civil Democratic Movement, which has been one of the regime’s main interlocutors as it plans the dialogue, said that only two of the five names proposed by the movement made it onto the final list. “We cannot reject those who were chosen, but we would have liked to choose others whose positions are more clear,” the source added. 

The board of trustees will meet in the first week of July—when the dialogue itself was supposed to take place—to hash out the details of the dialogue, including its invitees, duration, agenda, and priorities. Stakeholders are also reportedly continuing to jockey over who will lead the board.

The dialogue’s coordinator, Journalists Syndicate head Diaa Rashwan, has suggested that individuals close to the Muslim Brotherhood, even those who fled the country, may be invited to the dialogue, provided they have not been convicted of violent crimes. 

As for content, Reform and Development Party head and National Council for Human Rights member Mohamed Anwar al-Sadat used a Supreme Council for Media Regulation meeting to question why news sites like Mada Masr, Darb, and al-Manassa remain blocked in Egypt even as the country discusses a dialogue on a “new republic.” The country must leave space for alternative opinions “if we are truly stepping towards a new republic,” he said.

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