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Let Egyptian deaths rest in peace
Published in The Egyptian Gazette on 01 - 04 - 2011

CAIRO - Muslim fundamentalists have recently been calling for the demolition of mosques that have mausoleums belonging to members of the Prophet Mohamed's family. This has angered some citizens and clerics.
In Cairo, these mosques include Al-Hussein, El-Sayyeda Zeinab and El-Sayyeda Nafisa.
Some people, who have described the above call as a fundamentalist campaign targeting the Sufi sects, want a million people to demonstrate against the destruction of mosques that have mausoleums.
Abdel-Hadi el-Kassabi, the Grand Sheikh of the Sufi sects, says that these calls come in the light of a major celebration that was recently held on the occasion of the birthday of Al-Hussein, the grandson of the Prophet Mohamed, which drew one million guests from all over the country.
Ahmed Omar Hashem, a member of the Supreme Council of Sufi Sects, stresses the importance of improving the communications between Sufi sects and their sheikhs, in order to support the Islamic mission and to better cope with the absence of security.
“Egypt is currently suffering from a lot of problems. The Sufi sects must stand together against the fundamentalists who want to demolish mausoleums and mosques,” he explains.
El-Sayyed el-Gamili, an Islamic thinker, says that fundamentalists passionately believe that mausoleums shouldn't be built inside mosques, arguing that this is a form of polytheism. But Sufis approve of this kind of religious devotion.
Abdel-Shafei Abdel-Latif, a member of the Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs, told Al-Missaiya newspaper that the family of the Prophet Mohamed are very important in Islam.
Meanwhile, the Mufti of the Republic has issued a fatwa (religious edict), prohibiting this call from the fundamentalists, as, according to Islamic Law (Sharia), a tomb is owned before his death by the person buried there.
Islam also upholds the sanctity of tombs, as we should respect the dead. If anyone desecrates a tomb, it is a grave sin; the sin is so much the greater if it is the tomb of a member of the family of the Prophet Mohamed.
Islamic Law also stipulates that the bodies in mausoleums should not be moved to other tombs, not even when the mosques they are in are being renovated.

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