In a move aimed at curbing extremist religious thought, Egypt’s Ministry of Religious Endowments ordered all Muslim clerics to deliver identical, pre-written Friday sermons.
“No one disagreed during the meeting (of officials on Tuesday) and all the undersecretaries received the new instructions on pre-written unified sermons without incident,” said the Ministry’s First Undersecretary, reported Reuters.
A government source contacted by Egyptian Streets confirmed the report, adding that the identical sermons will commence this week.
The news comes days after President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi met with the Minister of Religious Endowments. At the meeting, the President urged the Ministry to take steps to tackle extremist religious discourse, said the State Information Service.
Last month, the Egyptian President renewed calls for a revolution in Islamic religious discourse, urging top Islamic scholars to “purge” Islam of “flaws” and to push back against extremist discourse.
In February 2014, Egypt’s Religious Endowments Ministry ordered that all Friday sermons at mosques be regulated by the government. The then-new policy saw a topic being chosen by the Ministry each week for imams to talk about.