Menassat Correction: Jama’a Islamyia Not MB Called for Female Activist Prosecution

Menassat Correction: Jama’a Islamyia Not MB Called for Female Activist Prosecution

The Beirut based Menassat news website issued a correction today for its original story published on July 22nd, which mistakenly translated the name Jama’a Islamyia (The Islamic Group) as Muslim Brotherhood in a report about statement issued by Jama’a Islamyia calling for the prosecution of feminist activist and writer Nawaal Sa’dawy on charges of blasphemy following recent offensive interviews and articles by Sa’dawy.

Ikhwanweb team had contacted the editor of Menassat to clarify the mistake and demanded correction after the report was quoted in several websites. Today, Menasat issued formal correction to its story as well as link to Ikhwanweb’s statement concerning the error which included also statement by Dr. Mahmoud Ezzat, MB Secretary General.


The following is the corrected version and the editor”s note,


CORRECTED: Islamic Group issues fatwa against Nawal Saadawi in Egypt



CAIRO, July 21, 2008 – The Jama”a Islamiya (Islamic Group) has called on Egyptian authorities to prosecute Dr. Nawal al-Saadawi on charges of blasphemy and contempt for religion and God.

Saadawi”s publisher, Madbouli Library, already pulled her book, The Fall of the Imam, and her play, God resigns for the Summit.

“Under the pretext of freedom of thought, blasphemy and ridiculing Islam and its laws and principle are underway,” a Jama”a Islamiya statement read.

The Jama”a Islamiya accused Saadawi of not only undermining faith but of undermining the stability and safety of the country as well. In a statement written by Sheikh Husein Al Gharib, a leading cleric with the Jama”a Islamiya, he questioned why Saadawi had never been prosecuted.

“Are state officials afraid of being intimidated and blackmailed for being anti-freedom of thought?” Al Gharib asked.
Al Gharib also asked why Saadawi had singled out Islam without attacking Christianity. “Does she dare to talk about Jesus Christ, considered by Christians God or the son of God?”

He also said, “Saadawi and her peers who claim to be people of thought, have sold themselves to the enemies of Islam, and are being used to target Islam and Muslims.”
Saadawi has sparked wide debate and controversy over the years with her opinions about traditions within Islam. She has called the Hajj (the pilgrimage) “a pagan habit” and referred to God in the feminine form.

But she maintains her position and has made her reputation by defending women”s rights and criticizing the political repression in Egypt.

As to the charges of the Jama”a Islamiya, Saadawi told MENASSAT in an article earlier this month, “I don”t answer to the ignorant.”

Egypt”s main guardian of Islamic orthodoxy, the Islamic Research Academy, filed a blasphemy case with the Attorney General in late June against the anticipated release of Saadawi”s play, God Resigns from the Summit.

The court is currently waiting for the completion of the charges being leveled against Saadawi by the Academy.

(Sources: Sobhi Abdallah, and MENASSAT)

[Editor”s note: this article has been revised to reflect the following correction:

Correction, July 24, 2008:

Due to an unfortunate editing mistake, the original article mistakingly translated “Jama”a Islamiya” as “Muslim Brotherhood” (al-Ikhwan al-Muslimin.) Jama”a Islamiya (Islamic Group) is a radical group devoted to overthrowing the Egyptian regime through violent Jihad (although some of its leaders officially renounced violence in 2002.) The Muslim Brotherhood currently calls for an Islamic state through democratic means.

In a reaction to MENASSAT”s article, Muslim Brotherhood Secretary General Mahmoud Ezzat said, “We promote the freedom of thought, and never in the history of the Muslim Brotherhood [have] we prosecuted or called for the prosecution of writers.”

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