Egypt shuts down Cairo shrine after visitors disobey anti-virus closure order

Ahram Online , Sunday 13 Sep 2020

A delegation of scholars had reportedly been allowed access to the shrine on Thursday, where they held a Quran recitation session

The ornate
The ornate, 500-year-old domed tomb of a sultan towers in the construction's path and, though untouched, will likely be surrounded on either side by the multi-lane highway. AFP

Egypt has shut down the shrine of a prominent Islamic scholar in Cairo after visitors violated an order barring anyone from entering the premises in order to stem the spread of the coronavirus, the religious endowments ministry said in a statement on Saturday.

A delegation of scholars had been allowed access to the shrine on Thursday, where they held a Quran recitation session, the statement said, adding that the ministry workers responsible for opening the shrine have been referred to investigation.

The Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani shrine is located in Old Cairo.

Shrines nationwide remain closed under precautionary measures imposed by the government due to the coronavirus crisis.

Egypt has eased restrictions on communal religious activities put in place since in March, allowing Friday prayers in major mosques since 28 August under strict preventive measures, and setting the weekly sermon at only 10 minutes.

Under the preventive measures, worshippers must wear facemasks, maintain social distancing, and use personal prayer rugs. Mosques are open only 10 minutes ahead of prayers and are closed immediately afterwards.

Mosques were allowed to reopen for daily prayers at the end of June for the first time since March.

Community centres as well as condolence and wedding halls attached to places of worship remain shut nationwide. Funeral prayers continue to be banned.

Short link: