Saturday, October 14, 2006

Egypt: President Mubarak Speaks On Religious Tolerance

Al-Ahram newspaper published an article on 14 October 2006 announcing a scheduled speech by Egypt's President Mr. Hosni Mubarak next week on Thursday. In order to read the full article in Arabic, please click on the image to the right.

The evening celebration is hosted by the Ministry of Religious Endowment, and "the important speech will be addressed to the Arab world and the Islamic world."

The speech will focus on "the challenges currently facing the Egyptian Nation, whether from the outside world or from some of its sons [citizens], the duty of Muslims towards these challenges, and how Muslims should behave in a worthy appearance that displays and clarifies the image of Islam of enlightened forgiveness and uprightness shown in action and not only in words."

"The speech will also deal with the responsibility of those preaching and teaching religion towards behaving in accordance with the modern age, ensuring the benevolent respect of other beliefs and religions, and the avoidance of any interference with these beliefs. Emphasis will be placed on the application of the principle of accepting others through the channels of continuous dialogue between followers of all religions for the purpose of world peace and prosperity of humankind."


  1. These are all noble ways of thinking. We will pray that his excellency be guided to affect the hearts and minds of his audience around the Arab world in positive ways in order to increase tolerance and cooperation and peaceful coexistence among people.


  2. The problem is particularly galling for the Islamic establishment because they cannot stand in the same court and argue theologically. And second they cannot find any political threat. I am sure it is infuriating not to have an easy target to attack.

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  3. I have just reviewed the government website and the President's remarks. They both sound really good, progressive, and thoughtful. However, they are at variance with what the Baha'is are experiencing. The President and the government have an opportunity to protect these human rights in practice, especially of those non-political, non-partisan, law-abiding minorities such as the Baha'is.
    Thank you for keeping me and others informed.


  4. It is indeed a noble calling, and I have every confidence that President Mubarak, a respected man of true principle and proven courage will do the right thing.

    It is essential that when religious tolerance is promoted, it must also include tolerance towards religious beliefs other than Egypt’s "recognized three." Anything less than that would be a waste of time and of no use. We can't say that “we are tolerant to only the few we recognize, and anything else is not our concern.” This would not be tolerance.

    The issue is not whether or not a religion is divine--this is a whole different matter--the issue is that any religious belief must be respected regardless of its origin or legitimacy. This is how today's world functions and is what the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights is based on.

    The Baha'is are not, and have never been, a threat to anyone or anything, and in particular "Public Order" (al-Nezam el-Aam) as claimed by the many proclamations made by Egypt’s fundamentalist establishment; all this talk has been fabricated in order to defame the Baha' is an excuse and a "catch phrase" that is intended to manipulate the masses and justify the injustices.


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