Sunday, June 17, 2007

Banned Film Gets Prominent Media Coverage in Egypt

Yesterday, 16 June 2007, AlMasry AlYoum Egyptian newspaper reported on the banning of a documentary film that has exposed the human rights crisis facing the Baha'is of Egypt.

The article, written by Muhammad Abd El-Khaleq Mussahel, states the following:

Banning of Documentary Film Regarding the Baha'is in Egypt

[State] Security authorities banned the release of a new documentary film regarding the Baha'is in Egypt. It prevented attempts of spreading its viewing and advertising it. The forbidden film is entitled "Identity Crisis Between My Religion or My Country: The Baha'i Quagmire in Egypt."

The Film's promotional clips, which were posted on the
"Baha'i Faith in Egypt" site, begin with a thickly bearded man, referred to in the film as one of the opposing Islamist lawyers, who was present at the 16 December 2006 session of the [Supreme] Administrative Court that issued a ruling against the Baha'is. This was when [he] was talking about the special punishment reserved for those that tarnish the land, requesting its application on the Baha'is, represented in death, Crucifixion, amputating their hands and legs, or exiling [them from earth].

Following the publication of this newspaper article, several sites reported on its content, including "U.S. Copts Association" and "Misryon [Egyptians] Against Religious Discrimination (MARED)."

The promotion for the film, produced by the independent documentary film maker, Ahmed Ezzat, which was posted previously on 6 June 2007, is included again below. As soon as the entire film becomes available, an announcement to that effect will be posted here.


  1. We have a saying in Portuguese that goes like this:
    The forbidden fruit is always the most desired one!

    Is this a forbidden documentary? I am sure many more Egyptians will want to to see it!


  3. May all deeds unworthy of the Most High be dragged screaming into the harsh light of day. That is the best cure. I hope a zillion people see this documentary, including everyone who works in the US State Department.

  4. By the way:
    A Brazilian Catholic organization published a report on Religious Freedom in the World.
    And it mentions the situation of the Baha'is in Egypt.
    You may read it here (if you understand Portuguese).

  5. Phillipe,
    Nothing is hidden anymore!

    Would you be able to translate that section on Egypt for us...please?

  6. dear marcom
    please we need translation about brazilian report

  7. Here is the translation of the section on Egypt:
    Egyptian authorities impose restrictions to free religious practice to non-Muslim religions; Muslims are 88% of the population. Islam is the official religion of the Arab Republic of Egypt and the sharia (Islamic law) is the primary source for national legislation .

    Therefore, all religious and civil acts that are not according to the sharia are forbidden, even to believers of non-Muslim religions. Islamic practice is tightly controlled by the imam and Arab leaders. Following this idea, the Government decided to keep on not recognizing the baha’i religion, considered as heretic by Muslims, and banned is personal and collective practice.

    In many areas of the country non-Muslim religions find difficulties to establish and their followers face all kind of obstacles, even on social and professional levels. A description of such obstacles was presented to the National Council for Human Rights, linked to the United Nations, as a testimony of the enduring discriminations that spread at all levels.

    As an example of a certain openness from the authorities, the newly elected Parliament, ruled last December that the construction or rebuilding of Christian temples should be a decision of district Governors and there is no need for approval from the Central Government.

  8. Marco,
    Thank you so much for the translation.

  9. so, Bilo, you are now officially quoted as a source in AlMasry AlYoum ... congratulations!!!

  10. Perhaps the two documentaries can be candidates for the International Documentary Awards. The deadline is June 22, so whoever has these documentaries can submit an application. The information is available on the following website. That way the whole world will see the documentaries not just the promos!


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