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Monday, July 23, 2012

Egypt’s Ministry of tourism issues the decision about prohibition of alcohol on Islamic holidays

According to the new decision of Egypt’s Minister of tourism, Mounir Fakhry Abdel-Nour, alcohol beverages will be prohibited for Egyptians along with month of Ramadan and on four other major Islamic holidays. So there will be impossible for Egyptians to purchase any alcohol during these days. But such a prohibition existed during previous 30 years, so the new one just confirms the older decree.

So according to the new decision of Ministry of tourism the serving beverages containing alcohol will be strictly forbidden for Egyptian citizens not only during the holy month Ramadan, when Muslims are fasting and abiding strictly Islamic prohibitions and rules, but on other Islamic holidays too, such as the Islamic New Year, the Holiday of Commemoration of Israa and Me’rag, Birthday of Prophet Mohamed and the Day of Arafa. According to Islamic doctrine the consumption of alcohol is forbidden at any times. MENA reports that Abdel-Nour’s decision was made out of “respect for the feeling of Muslims”. The decision stipulates that violations of this ban and serving alcohol on the days when it’s forbidden will result in legal sanctions.

However the serving of alcohol for Egyptians on any of the aforementioned days has been banned in Egypt before, so a lot of restaurant and bar owners do not see the big difference with issuing this new decree, as they didn’t serve alcohol during Ramadan and other Islamic holidays before too. Some of them cannot understand what this new decision is about and are confused now.

After the victory of the Islamist political forces in Egyptian parliamentary election Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) together with ultra-conservative Salafist Al-Nour Party made a majority in People’s Assembly, the Lower House of Egypt’s Parliament, and captured three quarters of seats. It caused the fears and worries of Egypt’s liberal and secular powers that Egypt could turn into Islamic country, as the Islamist Parliament was trying to interfere in the process of writing of the new Egypt’s Constitution. Later, in June, People’s Assembly was dissolved by SCAF after HCC (High Constitutional Court) ruling which declared Egypt’s Parliament unconstitutional. But later Islamist Mohamed Morsy was elected and inaugurated as Egypt’s President, and the fears about the possibility of theocratic rule in the state were renewed.