CWN - Egyptian authorities have suspended an Islamic preacher from public ministry, after he denounced Christians and Jews as “infidels.”
During a television broadcast, Salem Abdel Galil referred to Christianity and Judaism as “corrupt” faiths, whose practitioners cannot go to heaven. His comments were roundly criticized by other Muslim leaders, who observed that his language was similar to that of radical preachers who had stirred up violence against the country’s Christian minority. In his own defense, Galil said that he believed Christians and Jews hold “corrupt doctrines”—just as Christians and Jews believe that Islamic doctrines are corrupt. He declined to retract his statements.
The Egyptian ministry of religious affairs—where Galil once worked—announced that the preacher could not make television broadcasts or lead public prayers until he apologized for his comments. A television station that had broadcast his sermons, issued its own apology.
Galil also faces criminal charges, under a law against defamation of religious faiths. Naguib Gobrali, a Christian lawyer, filed a complaint, saying that Galil’s words “constitute confessional defamation.” A court will hear the case in June.