Hundreds of books have been taken from mosques by the Egyptian government as the country, mostly Muslim, takes action against the radical and extreme Muslim Brotherhood movement.
Sources said Thursday that this was done by the Ministry of Waqf (religious endowments) based on information that some mosque libraries held books by Hassan Al Banna, who founded the Brotherhood. Sayyid Qutb, and Yousuf Al Qaradawi, the movement’s leaders, were sentenced to death recently.
Al Jamaa Al Islamia (an Islamic Group), a Brotherhood ally, also wrote some of the books that were taken.
Nearly 2,000 books were confiscated in the campaign led by the Ministry on Wednesday at a primary mosque in Cairo.
Inspection director at the Waqf Ministry, Ashraf Fahmi, said, “There are strict instructions from Minister of Waqf Mohammad Juma to check libraries of all mosques to cleanse them of books disseminating extremist ideas.” He continued that, “The ministry will not allow the propagation of any thought alien to the moderate course of Al Azhar.”
After protests against president Mohammad Mursi in 2013, the army removed the president and began targeting the Brotherhood immediately afterward.
Thousands of extreme Islam followers, such as Mursi, have been imprisoned and handed severe sentences, even death.
In addition to the removal of books from the mosque, the Egyptian government has cracked down on the Brotherhood and its allies.