Al-Azhar and Salafi scholars prepare Islamic constitution

Al-Azhar and Salafi scholars prepare Islamic constitution

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Sun, 03/07/2011 - 17:21

A group of Islamist scholars is preparing a draft constitution for Egypt based on the Quran and Sunnah, with the aim of steering the country towards an Islamist model of government.

The group has named itself the Reform Rights Authority, and includes former Grand Mufti Nasr Farid Wasel, along with 20 scholars from Al-Azhar and several Salafi leaders.

“We must correct false policies that misguide the people,” said Mohamed Yousry, the group's secretary general, pointing to a constitution that Al-Azhar proposed in 1977 but which was ignored by the government.

However, Yousry criticized Al-Azhar, accusing it of working on dividing Islamist factions and creating enmity among their leaders. “That institution is still corrupt and still rejects Salafis,” he said.

He also accused the Sufi orders of serving secular US plans to separate religion from the state and from political life as a whole. “Those people spread superstition and charlatanism in society,” he said.

“We will support the candidates who advocate the application of Islamic law in the upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections,” he said. “Those who are against the Islamists rising to power are infidels who do not believe in God.”

For his part, Wahid Abdel Meguid, an expert at the Al-Ahram Centre for Political and Strategic Studies, said calls for an Islamist constitution were doomed to failure. “They are far from the Egyptian mainstream of Islamic and secular political forces, which are seeking a democratic constitution,” he said.

Translated from the Arabic Edition