Al-Azhar's Grand Imam declares support for a constitutional, democratic state
The document stressed its support for universal democratic rights such as free and democratic elections where the citizens as a whole constitute the sole and legitimate source of legislation.
The Grand Imam said that striving towards social justice needs to be a basic component in any future economic arrangement in Egypt. He stressed that affordable and decent education and health care services must become a right for all citizens.
The document was explicit in its support for freedom of expression in the arts and literary fields within the accepted boundaries of Islamic philosophy and moral guidelines. It highlighted the need for expanded scientific and popular campaigns to combat illiteracy and advance economic progress.
“We need a serious commitment to universal human rights, the rights of women and children,” El-Tayeb said.
In a clear reference to the status of religious minorities especially Copts, the Grand Imam stated that citizenship must be the sole criterion by which both rights and responsibilities are administered in society.
And now, why this is not good news for the Copts: Egypt is, by a large majority, Muslim. That Muslim majority will never allow Copts to have the same rights and the freedoms that Muslims have. So the Copts have citizenship, but they don't have numbers, and thus they will not have the same rights as Muslims.