Saturday, June 10, 2006

Egypt: Anti-Baha'i Campaign Intensifies

As the country is preparing itself for the 19 June 2006 Supreme Court session regarding the recognition of the Baha'i Faith in Egypt, the Egyptian media has been busy reporting several news articles about the Baha'i Faith itself as well as the preparation of the public for this upcoming important court session.

Today, Saturday, 10 June, there were several articles about the Baha'i Faith in Egypt, two of them were in "el-Masry el-Youm" (The Egyptian Today). The first article discussed in some detail the early history of the inception of the Baha'i Faith after the Bab'i movement, as seen in the eyes of the writers of that article. It also reports that in 1975, the Bahai's lost a lawsuit brought by 43 Baha'i plaintiffs against the Prime Minister and the Attorney General, requesting that the 1960 Presidential Decree outlawing the Baha'i Faith be reversed on constitutional grounds. The authors named all the plaintiffs in their article, and wrote that the Bahai's lost the lawsuit and were ordered to pay 30 Egyptian Pounds in costs. A response written in Arabic refuting the inaccuracies and misrepresentations found in the article could be seen here.

In a recent article, which was published in a separate paper "el-Ghadd" (Tomorrow) and written by a Baha'i from Jordan, balanced views and corrections to some of the articles in the media were provided.

The second article in "el-Masry el-Youm" illustrates a different type of journalism that reports only, and without interpretation or opinion. It is titled: "Baha'ism subject of 'Today's Sermon' in Port-Said mosques." The article states the following: "Baha'ism is Friday sermon's subject in all Port-Said mosques, which was based on a manifesto produced by the Ministry of Religious Endowment (Awqaf) # 56 for the year 2006, with the goal of alerting the citizens to the truth about this non-Islamic congregation."

The article continues: "The manifesto, which was distributed to all the Imams [leaders] of mosques and directors of Religious Endowment in Port-Said, affirmed to them that the Baha'i Faith contradicts Islam and defaces its teachings, and is considered as a clear Zionist conspiracy to destroy religious beliefs. The manifesto also clarifies that the Egyptian authorities took on that Faith in three edicts (fatawi): on 11 March 1939, 13 April 1950, and 25 March 1968, and produced a Republic's [Presidential] decree # 263 of the year 1960 dissolving all Baha'i Assemblies [Institutions] and Centers that were present in Egypt."

"Those who do not remember the past are condemned to relive it."
--George Santayana


  1. Mosques should be for amity and peace, not for spreading hatred, wars and guns!

  2. mosques should be for informing people about what is the islamic view of the current issues and if baha'ia is a current issue then people need to be aware of what is it and what is the islamic view of it and mosques should be an appropriate place for providing such information.

  3. They should tell the truth, not fabrications and plain lies. This is their responsibility....


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