Egypt, 2012: The Year In Fatwas
In previous decades in Egypt, the fatwas, or legal decrees issued by learned Muslims and based on Sharia law, revolved around questions like proper prayer, when and where women should wear the hijab, and if smoking was forbidden or permissible.
That was then.
The fatwas issued in the year 2012—the year when Islamists, spearheaded by the Muslim Brotherhood, assumed formal power—are, as one would expect, markedly different, that is, much less restrained. The popular Egyptian Arabic website El-Watan News recently compiled a list of 2012’s most "notable” (a euphemism) fatwas. I translate a summary of their findings below, augmented with additional observations: (continue reading...)