Egyptian Presidential candidate Amr Moussa was forced to deny Thursday the existence of a Jewish half-brother, calling the rumors “inciting and provocative.”
A number of Egyptian websites reported this week that Moussa’s father married a Jewish Egyptian actress and that Moussa has a half-brother named Eli who is an Israeli citizen.
On Thursday, Moussa rushed to clarify the family background on his official Facebook page, threatening to bring the propagators of the false rumors to justice.
He admitted that his father, former Egyptian parliament member Muhammad Moussa, had a son named Pierre during his studies in France in the 1920s. Moussa stressed, however, that Pierre “holds only a French passport and has no ties with Egypt.”
One Egyptian website claimed that Moussa’s father married Jewish-Egyptian actress Rachelle Ibrahim Levi, who had appeared in Egyptian films in the 1940s and 1950s under the stage name Raqiya Ibrahim.
“It is clear that the reference to this actress’ original name Rachelle … is meant to provoke and incite,” writes Moussa. “Moreover, the Jewish dimension is introduced by naming the child born in the 1920s, even though his name is not Eli nor is his mother Jewish or of Jewish ancestry.”
In the same note Moussa also denies dodging the army, claiming he was exempt from service for being his mother’s only child.
This week’s revelation that the mother of Salafist presidential candidate Hazem Abu-Ismail was an American citizen may prevent him from running for president. Under Egyptian law, the president may not carry dual citizenship. It is possible that rumors regarding Moussa were intended to thwart his candidacy as well.