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'Principles' of Sharia law must remain primary source of legislation: Egypt's Grand Imam

Egypt's Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayeb says new constitution must be based on 'principles' of Islamic law as specified in 1971 national charter

Ahram Online, Tuesday 10 Jul 2012
Ahmed el-Tayeb
Egypt's Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayeb (Photo: Reuters)
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Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayeb, Egypt's most senior Islamic cleric, has said the principles of Islamic law must remain the primary source of legislation in Egypt's new constitution.

El-Tayeb made the comments at a press conference on Tuesday.

Article two of the 1971 constitution, which defines the role of Islamic law in Egypt, must remain unchanged, he said.

Furthermore, the High Constitutional Court (HCC) should overturn any law that conflicts with article two.

It was his responsibility to the nation and God to make this statement, he added.

Article two has stirred controversy among members of Egypt's constitution-drafting assembly.

Conservative Islamists forces within the assembly have called for the removal of the term "principals" to make Islamic law per se the "primary source" of Egyptian law. They threatened to withdraw from the assembly if the article wasn’t amended in this way.

Meanwhile, secular and liberal parties have insisted the article remains unchanged to preserve the civil-state nature of Egyptian society.

The first constitution-drafting assembly, chosen by MPs on 17 March 2012, was dissolved in April following criticisms by various non-Islamist about the preponderance of Islamist members (66 out of 100) on the body.

While negotiating the formation of the assembly's second version, a deal was reached between Islamists and non-Islamists over the membership ratio, whereby Islamists would only take 50 per cent of the seats.  However, shortly afterwards non-Islamist figures again complained of unequal representation.

 

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Adel Masry
11-07-2012 01:59pm
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Religion & Modern Society
Religion is based on spirituality and solid faith. Both principles that is agianst realities and democracy. Prophet (SAWS) never claimed to be the head of state or army commander; but he was "Worshiper of Allah". Looka round to see how "Islamic" state have failed from Sudan to Iran. Allah Kabeer Ya Beni Misr
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Merille
12-07-2012 11:18pm
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Ignorant comment
The Prophet was a legislature, a statesman, a military leader, and religious leader. In Islam there is no separation between religion and politics. So don't you be ignorant of fundamental facts about Islam.
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Aladdin
11-07-2012 01:52pm
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Who are the Islamists?
Imam Tayeb must also comeup with solid definition of who is the "Islamists"? What his qualification and experience he/she must meets. Brotherhood fo Kazabeens have disobeyed Allah9 SWT) law and hs Prophet Sunnah. We can should NOT alloow those terrorists to hiujacke Egypt. Allah AKber.
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Bala
11-07-2012 01:27pm
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Constitution
Egypt being a Muslim majority country may like to have an inclination for principals of Sharia. But it is better left to the law makers than an Imam getting involved in politics. Egypt is also a multicultural progressive society which would certainly prefer a secular law which will suit all the sections of the society.
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Kristine
10-07-2012 07:33pm
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Stone Ages
The islamic law needs to be OUT of the constitution for Egypt. This is not what the people want. They wanted a secular nation, not a nation ran by the muslim religion. It seems like Egypt will never be free. People of Egypt... Your intentions were good, but people like El-Tayeb need to stay out of politics otherwise your country will never be free.
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Merile
12-07-2012 11:21pm
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Don't lie
Kristine doesn't tell the truth when she claims the people of Egypt want secular laws.
expat
12-07-2012 11:03am
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?????
sorry kristine
Salman
11-07-2012 03:53pm
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Islam is a million times betterthan secularism
It is a big lie to claim that the people of Egypt want a secular constitution. Secularism is the antithesias of Islam. Secularsm means hostility to religion.Islam is not Christianity which has no laws. Islam is a comprehensive way of life.
alii
11-07-2012 12:15am
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only islam
islam is the way of life governing every aspect of mankind it can never be avoided nor replaced till the day of judgement. so the only way out is islam to rule egypt.
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