Al-Azhar spokesman resigns and joins Tahrir protesters

The spokesman for Al-Azhar University, the largest religious institution in the Sunni Muslim world, resigned from his post and joined protesters demanding the departure of President Hosni Mubarak in Tahrir Square.

Muhammad Rifaa al-Tahtawi said the Al-Azhar Grand Sheikh is a wise, patriotic man, but he (Tahtawi) resigned because he is supposed to be representing Al-Azhar and his position does not reflect Al-Azhar's.

Tahtawi said to Al-Masry Al-Youm in a statement that he joined protesters to support them and that he will not leave Tahrir Square until their demands are met. He stressed that Islam forbids all forms of injustice.

He called for the penalization of all those involved in bullying protesters.

He said that confrontations will continue until Mubarak leaves, and that Mubarak leaving the country would only be the beginning of resolving the crisis. Tahtawy called for the establishment of a civil state in which people are allowed to select their representatives in an efficient manner. He added that protesters cannot believe promises that might not be kept.

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