PM forms committee to legalize unlicensed churches

Prime Minister Sherif Ismail issued a resolution ordering the formation of a committee to adjust the legal status of unlicensed churches and its affiliate buildings in accordance to Article 8 of the law regulating the construction and restoration of churches.

The committee includes the ministers of defense, housing, local development, legal affairs, justice, antiquities, and parliament as well as representatives for the General Intelligence, Administrative Control Authority, and the National Security Agency.

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi ratified the law regulating the construction and restoration of churches at the end of September 2016 after it was passed by the parliament.

Churches will file requests to adjust their legal status to the committee. The deadline to submit requests will be until September 2017, according to the resolution of the prime minister.

The committee will convene at least once a month in closed-door sessions. Its recommendations will be in accordance to the majority of votes of present members. In case of vote parity, the decision will be taken by the committee chairman.

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