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Sheikh Tantawi Plans Niqab Ban At Al-Azhar

Oct.05, 2009 in Muslim-World

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The Al-Azhar Univserity in Egypt is considered one the highest centres of learning in the Muslim world. Founded around 975 C.E. by the Fatamid rulers of Egpyt, Al-Azhar has  been continuously  issuing  degrees since that time.


It’s current dean, Sheikh  Tantawi has signalled his intention to ban the niqab at the university:


“Egypt’s highest Muslim authority has said he will issue a religious edict against the growing trend for full women’s veils, known as the niqab.


Sheikh Mohamed Tantawi, dean of al-Azhar university, called full-face veiling a custom that has nothing to do with the Islamic faith.” {source: BBC News}


Al-Arabiyah has more background to the news and below is my translation from their Arabic site:


“The Grand Sheikh of Al-Azhar Mohamed Sayed Tantawi, forced a veiled female student to take off her veil….stressing his intention to issue a formal decision to prevent the entry of veiled women to Al-Azhar’s institutes….” {Source: Al-Arabiya}


Sheikh Tantawi’s impending fatwa seems at odds with an earlier Egyptian court ruling surrounding the case of doctoral student Iman al-Zainy.


Al-Zainy was banned from attending the American University of Cairo campus, on account of her wearing the niqab. The court found the universities decision to ban her unlawful.


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