Zakzouk: Religious Channels Have Turned Muslims into World's Laughing Stock

Endowments Minister Mahmoud Hamdy Zakzouk said the ministry's preachers are not responsible at all for what he called "the fatwa pandemic" that has broken out in so-called religious satellite channels. He said these channels are in truth what most discredits Islam and Muslims given the backward fatwas that they spread across the globe, saying such fatwas turns Muslims into the world's laughing stock.

Talking at a meeting with the secretaries of students unions and their assistants yesterday, he called for a firm stance capable of setting tough rules for those standing against fatwas. The objective, he said, would be to protect Islamic societies from the intellectual and religious confusion caused by those who are not fit to issue fatwas.

"Egypt does not enact any law contrary to the Islamic Law (Sharia), as the Egyptian Constitution sets forth that this Law is the main source of legislation" he said.

He also affirmed that the Islamic Law must be applied only when it comes to the limits set by God, which represent only 5% of the Law itself.

The Minister said that during the aggression on Gaza mosque preachers shouldered the entire responsibility for raising people’s awareness about the necessity of providing money, food, medical supply and all kinds of humanitarian aid.

He denied his ministry had received any internal or foreign instructions regarding the issues dealt with in Friday sermons or the renovation of the religious discourse.

He went on to say that the Ministry does not want to send written sermons to the preachers, leaving them free to express their societies’ issues.

He also affirmed no one can instruct the ministry on what preachers have to say in their sermons, adding that all the measures taken by the ministry aim at achieving the society’s interests and stability.

He stressed that the ministry does not allow using mosques to spread extremist ideas and turning them into political battlegrounds or arenas to stage demonstrations or riots, as they are God’s homes.

They can not be violated by such acts, as they spoil people’s worship and religious rituals, he said.

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