28 October 2016
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas

  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  •    - Bahrain
  •    - Iran
  •    - Iraq
  •    - Israel
  •    - Jordan
  •    - Kuwait
  •    - Lebanon
  •    - Oman
  •    - Palestine
  •    - Qatar
  •    - Saudi Arabia
  •    - Syria
  •    - Turkey
  •    - United Arab Emirates
  •    - Yemen
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia

  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato

    » 07/20/2012, 00.00


    Al-Azhar calls on constituent assembly to adopt a separate article for Christians

    Article 2 of the constitution is still under discussion. It cites Sharia principles as the basis of Egyptian legislation. Religious affiliation continues to prevail in the country. This could lead to the isolation of the Christian community.

    Cairo (AsiaNews/ Agencies) - The heated debate between Islamists and moderate Muslims over Egypt's constitution has led al-Azhar University to propose a new article to protect Christians in case Sharia is adopted. Earlier this month, a Constituent Assembly committee drafted Article 2 to state, "Islam is the religion of the state and Arabic its official language. Principles of Islamic law (Sharia) are the principal source of legislation." However, the assembly drafting the new charter is considering adding a line that reads, "Christians and Jews shall resort to legislation derived from their own religions."

    Mohamed Abdel Salam, adviser to the Al-Azhar grand sheikh and member of the Constituent Assembly, said that, as it stands, the article is ambiguous, since it does not say which Sharia principles it should refer to and references to Christians could be misleading.

    Al-Azhar would prefer that a separate article be added to the constitution to stipulate that Christians be subject to their own religious laws, rather than including this provision in Article 2.

    Despite the steadfast defence of Christian rights and moderate Islam by al-Azhar and certain Muslim groups, the situation in post-Mubarak Egypt has not changed. Religion, not civil rights free from religious interpretations, dominates the debate, which is not what many of those who protested in Tahrir Square wanted. Notions like citizenship, the rights of the individual and the separation of state and religion are still excluded from the debate.

    For some experts, a separate article or law would protect Christians as a minority, but would lead to their total isolation, a trend already visible in many Cairo neighbourhoods and villages, where residential segregation along religious line prevails.

    This has slowed down Egypt's march towards modernity.

    Orthodox and Catholic Copts represent about 10 per cent of the population. Many are in favour of religion-based rights. This is already the case in Ira, Syria and Lebanon, where the population is defined by religious affiliation rather than shared citizenship.

    This has favoured the progressive ghettoisation of minorities, who face the danger of total isolation, which is counterproductive and damaging to universal civil rights.

    Article 2 of the constitution has not yet been changed. In order to stem the Islamist wave, al-Azhar Grand Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb has called on his representatives in the assembly to leave Article 2 of the 1971 Constitution as it is since it was agreed upon and accepted by all national forces.

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version

    See also

    14/01/2014 EGYPT - ISLAM
    Massive security deployment ahead of vote on Egyptian constitution
    A bomb exploded at a court in Cairo . The military are hoping for a victory for the "yes", which could open the nomination of Gen. Al- Sisi for the presidency. In recent days, many Islamists and Arab Spring activists of the arrested. The general could guarantee order and an improve the economy.

    14/01/2013 EGYPT - ISLAM
    Al-Azhar’s double game to Islamize Egypt and maintain power
    In recent years the authorities of the most important Sunni university, supported the youth of the revolution and are now with the Muslim Brotherhood. For the great scholar of Islam Fr. Samir Khalil Samir, such behavior is typical of the University, which has always supported those who govern. The new constitution based on Sharia will not transform Egypt into an Islamic state, for now. It takes advantage of the ignorance of a population that only trusts imams, all formed by al-Azhar. The document is primarily a ideological move by Islamists to appear like "real Muslims" before the Islamic world. Sharia, Islam, religion reassure the population. The future game of the Muslim Brotherhood and of Islam itself will evolve in the coming months on specific topics: jobs, the economy and development.

    29/11/2012 EGYPT
    Blitz of the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafists: Sharia is the main source of law
    Art. 2 of the new constitution voted in record time, it subordinates the law to the exact dictates of the dictates of the Koran. The House voted despite the boycott of the liberal parties, the Coptic Orthodox Church and other realities of civil society. The session was attended by only 85 members out of 100.

    19/07/2012 EGYPT
    Islamism and insecurity leave Egyptian Red Sea beaches empty
    Seventeen months after the fall of Mubarak, tourist executives lament a 70 per cent drop in the number of visitors. Tourist operators call on President Morsi not to islamise beach resorts. Tourists to Egypt in the first five months of this year were down 26 per cent from 2010 with earnings down 24 per cent.

    23/05/2012 EGYPT
    Egypt votes for new president amid disappointment and hope
    Challenge between Muslim or military candidates, or from Mubarak establishment. Many Christians support moderate Muslim, Abdul Moneim Aboul Fotouh. The Army tries to maintain its military and economic power. The economy suffers from few foreign investments, drop in tourism, high price of food and energy.

    Editor's choices

    The new bishop of Changzhi and the many voices on China-Vatican dialogue

    Bernardo Cervellera

    The ordination will take place on November 10 in the Cathedral. The bishop had been appointed by the Holy See at least two years ago. But he was waiting for the green light from Beijing. Similar situation in Chengdu. Fears for the presence of excommunicated bishops. Reconciliation between illegitimate and official bishops is not brought about by political gestures, but depends on personal and canonical procedures. A meeting between the Chinese delegation and the Vatican is not "imminent".


    Pope: the cruelty of those who kill children in Iraq “makes us weep”

    "Our hearts are shocked by the heinous acts of violence that have been committed for far too long against innocent citizens, be they Muslim, Christian or members of other ethnic groups and religions."  World Mission Day “is time of courage”.


    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.


    News feed

    Canale RSScanale RSS 

    Add to Google


    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®