Egyptian ‘heretic’ vows to fight decision to strip him of state award

Egyptian intellectual Sayyid al-Qemny has announced that he intends to challenge the recommendation of the Board of State Commissioners that he be stripped of the State Merit Award, which he was granted in 2009 for his achievements in social sciences.

The Board of State Commissioners made the recommendation on Monday on the grounds that Qemny's works are heretical, citing claims by Al-Azhar that his writings are in violation of the Quran and Sunna. The Board's recommendation is to be considered by the Adminstrative Court prior to a final ruling on the matter.

Qemny said he would resort to international arbitration should the Administrative Court rule in favor of the Board's recommendation.

“I will defend my case with all my strength,” he said, claiming that he is being attacked by Islamists because of his secular and liberal views.

“They fight the revolutionaries of Tahrir Square for the same reason,” said Qemny.

Minister of Culture Emad Abu Ghazy, meanwhile, said the lawsuit against Qemny has not yet been decided upon as it is still being deliberated in court.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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