Turkey, Qatar excluded from top Islamic council’s conference on Takfiri thought
The Ministry of Religious Endowment - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO: Turkey and Qatar were excluded from the Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs’ two-day conference on the gravity of Takfiri thought, which started Tuesday.

Youm7 reported that SCIA’s conference was attended by Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab, a number of scholars and ministers from 41 several Muslim and Arab countries, and  representatives of the Nile Basin countries, with the purpose of putting an end to Takfiri thought and fatwas (religious edicts) that harm national interests and international relations.

However, Al-Arabiya reported on March23, that Turkish and Qatari delegates have been excluded from attending the Islamic affairs summit in Egypt, citing the two nations’ foreign policies towards certain Arab states as the reason.

Minister of Religious Endowments Mohamed Mokhtar Gomaa said that invitations were not sent to the two countries to attend the two-day conference of the Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs.

“This year’s conference aims at correcting misconceptions among many young people and extremist groups,” the Ministry said Friday.

The event, which was chaired by Gomaa under the patronage of interim President Adly Mansour, emphasized that this year’s iteration of the conference will deal with the challenges that extremist ideologies impose on the region.

Youm7 reported Tuesday that foreign delegations consisting of 150 members from nearly 23 out of the 30 invited countries and organization arrived in Egypt to participate in the event, including Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Amman and Russia.

“The maximum penalties should be applied to those who issue a fatwa without qualifications, whether it was Takfiri or not”, head of the Fatwa Committee of Al-Azhar Abdel Hamid al-Atrash told Sada El-Balad Wednesday.

Atrash added that representatives from the Interior Ministry were supposed to attend the two-day conference, especially as the conference deals with the challenges and terrorist acts that extremist ideology imposes on the region.

Sabra al-Qasimi, the general coordinator of the Islamic Alliance to Renounce Violence, stressed the importance of the conference, reaffirming that Al-Azhar should take major steps to combat Takfiri thoughts.

As a part of its efforts to combat terrorism, The Ministry of Religious Endowments announced in February it would hold social dialogue seminars in several mosques nationwide to counter Takfiri thought, which legitimizes the designation of some Muslims as apostates by other Muslims.

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