55,000 unlicensed clerics have been banned from preaching politicized Islam in mosques. Is this the beginning of the end?
The minister of religious endowments, Mohamed Moktar Gomaa, announced on Tuesday that it will bar 55,000 unlicensed clerics from preaching politicized Islam in mosques. This announcement is considered to be a move to silence sympathizers of deposed Islamist President Mohamed Morsi.
Unlicensed preachers as well as small unlicensed mosques have been a long standing issue in Egypt, and under Morsi's rule the trend exponentially rose. The overall goal of the ban is to spread a moderate message of Islam, and to stop radicalising Egyptian's ultimately resulting in a threat to Egypt's security.
“The decision is only meant to legalize the preaching process during Fridays’ mass prayers and make only those authorized to do it,” Gomaa told Reuters.
In the past Mubarak had tried to make this move against fundamentalist preachers, but was unsuccessful due to the wide influence of Islamist. What has changed since then is that it seems that the public and Al-Ahzar are in support of these measures, and since June 30th the Muslim Brotherhood leadership has been systematically dismantling.
This is a decisive blow against the Brotherhood, and may usher in the official dissolution of the group. In these turbulent times a moderate Islamic message may be what is needed to re-establish a safer Egypt and hopefully the return of it's much needed tourists.