Egypt: Freedom of Worship, Blogs to the Press, Anti-torture Campaigns Continue and More

In this week’s round-up from the Egyptian blogosphere, I am highlighting freedom of worship from two blog posts by Big Pharaoh and Baha’i Faith in Egypt, how an Egyptian blogger has started covering blogs for a weekly newspaper in Egypt, how anti-torture campaigns by bloggers extend to one of Egypt’s coastal cities and finally a technological tip by Greendata blog for Facebook users.

Freedom of worship: Big Pharaoh reports this week on the arrest of 15 Egyptians. The Pharaoh says their only charge is that they are “Quraneyeens”. He says:

They’re Muslims who believe in the Quran, and only the Quran…In traditional Sunni Islam, religious jurisprudence and law are mainly derived from two main books: the Quran and the Hadith. The Quran we all know. But what about the Hadith? These are the actions and deeds of the Prophet Muhammed. The issue with the Hadith is this: they were written over 150 years after the death of the Prophet. Before that they were transmitted orally in a way that would make their utter authenticity pretty doubtful.

He adds:

Even today no scholar or religious figure can dare to declare that the entire volumes we have now at hand are all authentic. This is the reason why the Hadith are classified into strong and weak Hadiths.

Another issue with the Hadith is the fact that many of Islam’s controversial issues are found in the Hadith and not the Quran. Things such as the status of women and Sharia’s penal code were derived from the Hadith. Even the adult breast feeding fatwa has its roots in a Hadith.”

This is a very interesting topic worth reading on Big Pharaoh’s blog.

Baha’is in Egypt: Another freedom of worship-related topic is the dilemma of the Baha'i Faith in Egypt. The Baha’i Faith in Egypt blog reports on an identity crisis of 14-year-old Egyptian twin children, who continue to try to thrive without Egyptian birth certificates.

The blog quotes an Egyptian newspaper as saying “the children's parents and grandparents are Egyptian. Even after the passing of more than three years of court battles, Dr. Raouf has not been able to obtain birth certificates for his children. Since Egypt’s Supreme Administrative Court has prevented Bahá’ís from documenting their religion as “Bahá’í” in the religion section on all official documents—in violation of citizenship rights to freedom of belief—Dr. Raouf in collaboration with a team of attorneys, was forced to amend his request to insert dashes or leave the religion section vacant on his children’s birth certificates.”

Blogs Move to the Press: Egyptian blogger Abdel Monem Mahmoud or “Ana-Ikhwan” Blog has announced that he will be covering blogs on a weekly basis for the Egyptian newspaper “Al-Destoor”. He has just posted his first article this week according to his blog.

Abdel Monem
was released from prison on June 2 after spending more than 45 days for political allegations.

Anti-police Torture Campaigns Continue in Port Said: Hossam El-Hamalawy of Arabawy blog is highlighting Tamer Mabrouk’s blog’s campaign on anti-corruption and anti-police brutality. Mabrouk is a blogger from Port Said, an Egyptian coastal city that is located on the Suez Canal. Arabawy says:

“Tamer has just posted an audio-recording of a phone conversation between Police Officer Ahmad Tawfeeq and a woman teacher he allegedly mistreated by the name Ibtessam as a favor for one of Mubarak’s NDP members Ali el-Alfi. In the conversation, Ibtessam accuses the officer of assault and severe beatings in the street–something he did, according to woman Ibtessam, as a favor for the “big guys.”

Facebook Tip: Recently in Egypt, I have noticed the growing number of people who have started using Facebook to run part of their social life. It is amazing how big groups started communicating through the facebook in Egypt to attend concerts, sell stuff or find a job. It has become a world of its own in a very short time. Greendata blog is giving us a tip on Facebook registration.

And with this Facebook tip, I will leave you here, until next week!

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