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ANHRI demands acquittal of TV-presenter Islam El-Beheiry - Daily News Egypt

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ANHRI demands acquittal of TV-presenter Islam El-Beheiry

The controversial researcher was sentenced to five years in prison

The Arab Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) condemned Sunday the prison sentence handed to TV presenter Islam El-Beheiry over blasphemy charges.

The controversial scholar had his sentence to a five years in prison upheld on Saturday, after being accused of “insulting the divine”.

ANHRI demanded the acquittal of El-Beheiry, and for all related charges him to be dropped.

“In a democratic society, countering opinions shouldn’t occur through terrorising and courts, but through exchanging arguments, as long as they don’t include hate speech,” the network said, adding that “insulting religion is a vague charge that violates the freedom of speech”.

El-Beheiry hosted a programme that questioned the teachings of Salafi preachers. In many of his episodes, he provided video clips of famous and much-respected Salafi preachers, and criticised their religious arguments. His programme was suspended after several warnings from Al-Azhar and a number of media officials.

El-Beheiry’s lawyer is expected to appeal the sentence again, and start a new round in the appeals court. He said on his social media page that it is illegal for El-Beheiry to be sentenced on blasphemy charges, as he was previously acquitted of them, in another case.

The programme, which was broadcasted on Al-Qahera Wal Nas satellite channel and hosted by El-Behiry for two years, received much criticism from conservative preachers and clerics at government-affiliated institution Al-Azhar and the Ministry of Religious Endowments.

Supporters of El-Beheiry’s stance have previously argued that the independent researcher has been working in accordance with President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s initiative that called on Islamic institutions in the country, including Al-Azhar, the Ministry of Religious Endowments, and Dar Al-Ifta, to “renew religious discourse”.


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  • Al Masry

    The Salafi ands Wahabi are guilty of misinterpreting Islam and reviving Islamic Caliphs bloody its history. Mr. Islam mentioned the Shehadah several time in his speech.

  • Al Masry

    Mr. Islam and others like Sheikh Nasrallah are uncovering the rotten sitory and false says and evil interpretation of the Holy Quran. We should hold to the Shehda and adapt our faith to modern life. It happens in every faith that people ask for better meanings and values. from the savages who mis represented the faith.

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