ED GILES ON ASSIGNMENT FOR THE SYDNEY MORNING HERALD AND THE AGE.

The secretive Muslim Brotherhood is the new power player in Egypt - and close scrutiny will follow.

It has been called a sleeping giant, a vast, secretive organisation that has been forced to live and work underground for most of the past 84 years.

But since the fall of Hosni Mubarak's brutal 30-year rule last February, the Muslim Brotherhood has emerged as a powerful force in Egyptian politics. Its newly formed Freedom and Justice Party was this week confirmed as winning 47 per cent of the vote in lower-house elections.

Raising alarm in the West and suspicion from liberal, secular and Coptic Egyptians, the Brotherhood's dominance in Egypt's new parliament, coupled with a strong showing from the ultra-conservative Salafist bloc, has changed the face of Egyptian politics overnight.

But, how will the secretive movement that has survived underground for so long, become an open, accountable political player?

smh.com.au/world/stepping-out-of-the-shadows-20120127-1qlht.html#ixzz1mwjbwXmf

FROM ASSIGNMENT WITH MIDDLE EAST CORRESPONDENT, RUTH POLLARD, PUBLISHED JANUARY 28, 2012, 2011.

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