Reactions to statements by Secretary of the Coptic Church’s Holy Synod Bishop Bishoy, in which he challenged the authenticity of certain verses of the Quran, continued to reverberate–both in Egypt and abroad–on Wednesday.
The Shura Council’s committee for culture, media and tourism called upon the Grand Sheikh of Al-Azhar and Coptic Pope Shenouda III to write a "national prescription" for the treatment of sectarianism.
The National Council for Human Rights, for its part, called on the media to refrain from “stirring up issues that could lead to religious discord.”
Minha Bakhoum, director of the department of media and public diplomacy at the Foreign Ministry, stressed the necessity of "ensuring thoroughness and credibility" when reporting the facts.
A group of self-proclaimed "Egyptian nationalist intellectuals" had planned to stage a protest in front of Egypt's High Court to demand the removal of Bishoy. The event, however, was postponed until Thursday and moved to a different location in light of a papal decree against protests inside the cathedral.
"The pope ordered the security agencies to deal with us if we insisted on staging the protest,” said Coptic activist and protest organizer Boulous Ramzy. “We have also received threats from fanatic Copts warning us not to gather in the cathedral."
In Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, members of the International Islamic Fiqh Academy, which is devoted to issues of Islamic jurisprudence, launched a violent attack on Bishoy's statements, which they considered evidence of "a fear of a rising Islamic tide."
Translated from the Arabic Edition.