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Egypt's Al Jamaa al Islamiya Urges Al Qaeda To Open Dialogue With Obama

The Egyptian Islamist group al Jamaa al Islamiyya urged al Qaeda to put aside the group's long-standing differences with the United States and make good use of President Obama's efforts to begin a new era that would bring back the values of justice, tolerance, and would give people back their rights. The group called on al Qaeda to open dialogue channels with the U.S. President, who according to the statement, could be "today's friend."

The group also said it looked forward to Obama's visit to Egypt, and hailed the efforts he undertook in the first 100 days of his presidency. "We value the efforts he exerted in the past 100 days, to end this false "clashes of civilizations" saga that President Bush has created for no reason and which harmed the United States more than any other parties."

The group also invited President Obama to learn more about the group's experience in Egypt and about the recent ideological revisions adopted by its leadership. The statement also urged President Obama to release the group's spiritual leader, Omar Abdel Rahman, a blind cleric serving a life sentence for his role in the 1993 World Trade Centre bombing.