CAIRO: An Al-Azhar Faculty of Islamic Sciences will be established in the United Arab Emirates per an agreement signed Wednesday, Al-Azhar announced.
Al-Azhar Imam Ahmed al-Tayeb signed the agreement with Mohamed Matar al-Ka’aby, the head of the UAE General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments, in Cairo.
The agreement aims to raise religious awareness and promote the culture of religious dialogue and coexistence by organizing joint events and exchanging experiences and scholarship cadres in the field of fatwas, religious discourse and research, according to the statement.
Al-Azhar, the most prestigious religious institution in the Muslim world, has engaged in several activities to refute extremist ideology in the past two years.
Al-Azhar is ready to send clergymen to France or train French Sheikhs to ideologically fight the terrorism and extremism, al-Azhar Deputy Abbas Shouman told AFP Nov. 16.
He highlighted the necessity to “rectify wrong thoughts” adopted by the Islamic State group, via sending moderate sheikhs to Europe and opening an al-Azhar center in France.
Al-Azhar had advised French officials before the Paris attacks, that France is in need for moderate sheikhs, Shouman added, calling for French authorities to supervise those who are responsible for religious discourse.
Further, adviser to Egypt’s Grand Mufti Ibrahim Negm delivered a speech Nov. 13 at the European Parliament (EP) and agreed to translate reports issued by Dar al-Iftaa’s observatory, founded to refute fatwas of extremist groups in a scientific fashion, according to a statement by Negm.
During a meeting with the EP’s Muslim member Sajjad Karim, Negm agreed to provide the EP with 1,000 official fatwas translated into English, French and German that consider the conditions of Europe’s Muslim community.
The possibility of training European imams in the field of countering extremism was also discussed in the meeting.
The EP will adopt Egypt’s Dar al-Iftaa, which is affiliated with Al-Azhar, as a reference for Islamic Fatwas, according to Negm’s statement.