American University Cairo religion professor loses post in academic freedom fight
(RNS) CAIRO — The university’s president withdrew the title awarded in a professor’s contract after the professor refused a donor’s demand that he advocate for Islam over other religions in his teaching and scholarship.
Coptic abbot’s murder points to strains over ecumenism in Egypt
(RNS) — Egypt’s Coptic Orthodox community is reeling from the murder of the abbot of St. Macarius Monastery, apparently by traditionalists of his own faith, in a fourth-century center of meditation and scholarship near Cairo.
Fearing extremist violence, Egypt silences 20,000 storefront mosques
CAIRO (RNS) — The Egyptian government has banned preaching at 20,000 mosques as a precautionary measure to prevent extremist violence during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
Unrelenting killing of Coptic Christians intensifies debate over martyrdom
CAIRO (RNS) — ‘We need to stop viewing this harassment toward us with pride and saying terrorism gives us a chance to play the same role our ancestors did like in those Sunday school stories about the torture of martyrs,’ said Bassem Al-Janoubie, an Egyptian Coptic Christian.
Clerics offering religious edicts in Cairo metro stir debate
CAIRO (AP) — The booth in Cairo’s al-Shohada subway station is part of a push to correct misconceptions and misinterpretations of religious texts seen as fostering Islamic militancy in the country.
In Egypt, atheists considered a ‘dangerous development’
CAIRO (RNS) A government wing that issues religious edicts released a survey in December claiming Egypt was home to exactly 866 atheists — a number deemed “a dangerous development.”
Turkey plans to establish an Islamic university with a broader Muslim curriculum
ISTANBUL (RNS) Political unrest continues to sweep Egypt and Syria, once hubs for Islamic learning, and more students are turned off by Saudi Arabia’s more literalist interpretation of Islam. This gives Turkey an opening.
Vatican settles with Benetton over pope-kissing ad
VATICAN CITY (RNS) The Vatican has settled a lawsuit with Benetton clothing group for using the image of Pope Benedict XVI kissing a Muslim imam in an ad campaign. By Alessandro Speciale.