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On Thursday July 25, AWR Editor-in-Chief, Cornelis Hulsman, invited me and the other interns to take part to a very peculiar experience: joining him in his interview with Safwat Hegazi, a leading Islamist.
The Islamist landscape in Egypt is often seen through the lens of two dominant groupings: The Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafis, the latter of which have splintered into several smaller political parties. But Sunni Islam, lacking an organizational hierarchy, facilitates the emergence of...
Nizār Ghurāb, a lawyer from al-Jamā’ah al-Islāmīyyah, filed a report at the Council of State to demand the Azhar Fatwá Committee and the Ifta House (Dār al-Iftā’) to issue a fatwá prohibiting cartoonists from ridiculing the sanctity of Islam and Islamic law (Husayn ‘Umrān, al-Misrīyūn, May 18, p....
For the first time in the history of the Catholic Church, the Vatican Pope Benedict XVI announced on February 11 that he will resign as pope on February 28, 2013. Below is the full text of Pope Benedict XVI’s declaration, as presented on the Vatican website:
Azhar Senior Scholars will convene an emergency meeting tomorrow (February 11), headed by Grand Shaykh of the Azhar Ahmad al-Tayyīb, to choose a new Muftī of the Republic to replace Dr. 'Alī Jum'ah. whose mandate will end in March 2013. A number of 25 professors of the Azhar have nominated...
The popular image of Salafī Muslims in Egypt is of a lower-class, older generation, perhaps limited in educational achievement. This is not their fault, many might patronizingly sympathize, as President Mubarak is blamed for letting the school system rot to keep the population ignorant, poor, and...
Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II has confirmed his support for the Azhar document, which was adopted to renounce the violence and political differences dominating society (Mamdūh Thābit and Sahar Hamdānī, al-Misrī al-Yawm, Feb. 6, p. 4). Read original text in Arabic
It is with great sadness that a number of venerate Muslim scholars see the retirement date of the Grand Shaykh of Dār al-Iftāꞌ comes closer. Having his term office extended in February 2011 for one more year, many of his students and colleagues had asked for a further extension taking into account...
Political forces confirmed their commitment to national dialogue by signing of the Azhar document that renounces violence. The National Salvation Front (SNF), Egypt’s largest opposition bloc, has confirmed that the document is a voice of conscience that emerged with the support of the Grand Shaykh...
The Cairo Criminal Court has sentenced seven Copts to death in absentia for insulting Prophet Muhammad, defaming Islam, and harming Egyptian national unity. The capital punishment decision, which must be reviewed, has been approved by the Muftī of the Republic Egypt.    The pro-Islamist newspaper...
A source close to the Grand Shaykh of the Azhar, Dr. Ahmad al-Tayīb, told al-Watan that, the latter had decided to prolong his holidays in his hometown in the Luxor Province in Upper Egypt, concerned on the attempts to what they called the “Brotherhoodization” of the Ministry of Awkaf or Awqāf (...
An article in the English The Telegraph on Jan. 13 said that the number of Coptic Churches in the United States has grown from four churches to 200 in 40 years. There are so many Coptic refugees from Egypt fleeing, if they can, to the United States that some Coptic Churches have had to be extended...
In preparation for the Christmas celebrations on Sunday (January 6), the Church is taking strict security measures, Nādir Marqus, member of the Coptic Orthodox Millī (Lay) Council, declared. Security committees – beside the Coptic Scout youth- will be in charge of securing all the Churches of...
The State Council of Administrative Court set the coming March 26 as date to rule in the complaint filed by the Arab Center for Transparency and Integrity against the General Prosecution and the Illicit Gains Authority as both have not made any progress in the investigations on illicit gains cases...
Seventeen governorates head to polling stations Saturday, December 22 to vote on the second phase of Egypt’s draft Constitution; observers record a number of electoral violations. [Husayn Ramzī, Al-Misrī Al-Yawm, Dec. 23, p. 5] Read original text in Arabic
[About the author: Lamīs Yahyá is a former AWR intern. She is Muslim, studied Egyptology in Egypt and now studies Coptology in Germany, a rare combination that reflects a strong wish to come to mutual understanding between Muslims and Christians. Lamīs Yahyá wrote this text, interesting enough,...
Doug May, an American who works with CIDT as financial manager, is a Catholic priest who provides pastoral services to foreign English-speaking and Egyptian Arabic-speaking communities.  Doug is often asked his opinions about freedom and democracy by both communities.  Having lived and worked in...
The demonstrations and riots surrounding the US Embassy in Cairo and other locations throughout the Islamic world have caused much questioning about Muslims and their attachment to and sensitivity over their faith. While many would agree the film ‘The Innocence of Muslims is crude and insensitive...
Recent years have witnessed a series contradictions in our performance of religious rituals and our morals and behaviors. There are double standards, even among individuals. You may find many people who are, in appearance, religious; they go to mosques frequently, they pray, they wear hijāb, and...
Dr. Muhammad Mūsá 'Uthmān, Professor at the Azhar University, issued a fatwá tukafir (Reviewer's Note: plural of takfīr which means accusing others of being nonbelievers) against all Jamā'āt Islmīyah members. Foremost of these were its members who were involved in the assassination of President al...
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