History of bahai faith in egypt – Human rights

Volume 18, Issue 1 / April-June 2006.  One country

Once among the most active communities in
 
the Middle East, Bahá’ís of Egypt have long faced
 
 
persecution

The Bahá’í community of Egypt was once among the most vibrant and active in the Middle East, with Spiritual Assemblies and local groups established throughout the country, and an impressive array of administrative, educational, and social institutions.

The community was among the first to be established outside of Iran, birthplace of the Faith’s Founder, Bahá’u’lláh. Bahá’í merchants settled in Alexandria and Cairo in the 1860s.

By 1900, a number of Arabic language Bahá’í books were being published in Cairo, and Egypt had become a transit point for Western Bahá’ís coming to and from Acre in what was then Ottoman Palestine, where the son of Bahá’u’lláh, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, was imprisoned.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá, himself, visited Egypt in September 1910, shortly after his release from prison, and there made the acquaintance of a number of intellectuals and other influential figures. Significantly, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá spent a total of almost two years in Egypt, visiting on two other occasions. He became a well known public figure — as evidenced by extensive press coverage in Egypt of his funeral in 1921.

The Bahá’í community of Egypt grew steadily during the period from the turn of the century to the mid-1920s, and included individuals from minority groups such as those of Kurdish, Coptic, and Armenian origin.

In 1924, the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Egypt was formed. This represents the highest administrative body on a national level in the Bahá’í Faith, a sign of a community’s maturity.

 At one point in the 1930s, a member of the Egyptian Parliament made a public tribute to the Faith. And in 1934, the National Spiritual Assembly achieved legal incorporation. Authorities allocated four plots to serve as Bahá’í cemeteries in Cairo, Alexandria, Port Said, and Isma’iliyyih, having decided it would not be lawful for Bahá’ís to be buried in Muslim cemeteries.

In May 1944, the community celebrated the Centenary of the Faith’s founding in an impressive and newly completed national headquarters building in Cairo. More than 500 Bahá’ís from around the country attended, along with some 50 guests who were Christians, Muslims, and Jews.

During the 1940s and 1950s, Bahá’í festivals and public meetings were commonly publicized in the media and regular Bahá’í meetings were open to the public. Official statistical publications listed the Bahá’í Faith among the religious movements active in Egypt. In April 1955, the community purchased some 17,000 square meters of land on the banks of the Nile for use as the future site of a Bahá’í House of Worship. By the late 1950s, local Assemblies had been established in 13 cities and towns, and Bahá’í groups existed in another 11 localities.

At the same time, such progress disturbed fanatic elements in Egyptian society. In the early 1940s, to cite one incident, the custodian of the national headquarters building was at one point beaten, suffering a broken arm.

In 1960, without warning or explanation, President Gamal Abdul Nasser signed a short, six paragraph Decree stating that “all Bahá’í Assemblies and Centres” are “hereby dissolved, and their activities suspended. Individuals, bodies and institutions are warned to refrain from any activity.” All Bahá’í properties — including the national headquarters building, the libraries and cemeteries — as well as all Bahá’í funds and assets were confiscated. The properties and assets have not been returned to this day.

The government promised that individuals would remain free to practice their religion. In keeping with the Bahá’í principle of obedience to government, the Bahá’ís of Egypt duly disbanded their institutions immediately. The Faith’s members shifted to a footing that emphasized quiet worship by individuals and families, with limited social and educational activities focused on internal development. Unfortunately, they have nevertheless faced episodes of harsh persecution, along with continuous restrictions on their personal, religious and .social activities.

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Volume 18, Issue 3 / October-December 2006     – one country

Egypt court rules against
 
Bahá’ís on ID cards, upholding policy of discrimination

CAIRO — In a closely watched case that became the focus of a national debate on religious freedom, Egypt’s Supreme Administrative Court has ruled against the right of Bahá’ís to be properly identified on government documents.

The decision, handed down on 16 December 2006, upholds a government policy that forces the Bahá’ís either to lie about their religious beliefs or give up their state identification cards. The policy effectively deprives Egyptian Bahá’ís of access to most rights of citizenship, including education, financial services, and even medical care.

The ruling was immediately criticized by the Bahá’í International Community and human rights organizations in Egypt. It also received extensive media coverage in Egypt and the Arab world.

“We deplore the Court’s ruling in this case, which violates an extensive body of international law on human rights and religious freedom to which Egypt has long been a party,” said Bani Dugal, the principal representative of the Bahá’í International Community to the United Nations. “The Court’s decision threatens to make non-citizens of an entire religious community, solely on the basis of religious belief.”

The case concerns a lawsuit filed against the government by a married couple, Husam Izzat Musa and Ranya Enayat Rushdy, who had their identification cards and passports confiscated after they applied to have their daughters added to their passports, which listed the Bahá’í Faith as their religion.

In Egypt, all citizens must list their religious affiliation on state ID cards and other documents, and they must choose from one of the three officially recognized religions — Islam, Christianity or Judaism.

In April, a lower administrative court ruled in favor of the couple, saying the state must issue them ID cards that properly identified their religion. The ruling said that even if the government did not recognize the Bahá’í Faith, adherents should still have their religious status properly stated on official documents.

That ruling provoked an outcry among extremist elements in Egyptian society, who objected to any official mention of a religion other than the three mentioned in the Qur’an, opening a vigorous debate over issues of religious freedom and tolerance here.

Since April, more than 400 articles, stories, commentaries and programs have appeared in the Egyptian and Arabic news media about the case or its fallout.

The Court’s ruling

In May, the government appealed the lower court’s ruling, which brought the case before the Supreme Administrative Court. The Court held a series of hearings on the case through the summer and fall before issuing its final ruling on 16 December.

In the ruling, the Supreme Administrative Court offered a contradictory rationale to support the idea that Egypt can both uphold its commitment to international human rights covenants that uphold freedom of religion or belief, such as Article 18 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, and satisfy an Islamic interpretation that says only three religions are “heavenly,” and thus deserving of protection under that right.

On the one hand, the Court wrote, “all Egyptian constitutions [have] guaranteed the freedom of belief and the freedom of religious rites, as they constitute fundamental principles of all civilized countries. Every human being has the right to believe in the religion or belief that satisfies his conscience and pleases his soul. No authority has power over what he believes deep in his soul and conscience.”

At the same time, however, the Court wrote that “the Bahá’í belief — as unanimously concluded by the Muslim imams as well as the rulings of the Supreme Constitutional Court and the Supreme Administrative Court — is not among the recognized religions, whoever follows it from among the Muslims is considered apostate.”

Thus, “despite its guarantee in Article 18 [of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights] to give everyone the right to freedom of thought, expression and religion, ‘this latter right should be understood within the limits of what is recognized i.e. what is meant by religion is one of the three religions: Islam, Christianity and Judaism,’” the Court wrote, citing an earlier Egyptian Supreme Court decision.

As such, the Court wrote, the recording of the Bahá’í Faith or other religions “which [Islamic] scholars of the nation and the successive rulings of both the constitutional and administrative courts unanimously agreed are not among the heavenly religions…is not allowed. This is established on the grounds that the legal provisions that regulate all these issues are considered part of the public order.”

News of the decision and its impact on Egypt’s small but active Bahá’í community were carried by the Associated Press, Reuters, and Agence France-Presse, as well as on BBC radio and France24 television. It also received extensive coverage in newspapers and on television in Egypt and in Arab countries.

Egyptian human rights groups immediately condemned the decision.

The Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS) issued a press release on 17 December expressing “great concern,” saying it was “unfortunate that the debate raised during the crisis was restricted to a doctrinal prosecution of Bahá’ísm [sic], while totally overlooking the core of the issue, namely, the right of each citizen to embrace the religion or beliefs of his own free choice without being discriminated against by any authority in society.”

In an unprecedented move, the international governing body of the Bahá’í Faith wrote a public letter to the Bahá’í community of Egypt a week after the ruling, casting the struggle for the rights of Bahá’ís in Egypt as part of a “peaceful” and principled “fight for justice” that contributes to the establishment of a “single global standard of human rights,” based on the principle of the oneness of humankind.

The Universal House of Justice urged Egyptian Bahá’ís to “stand firm and persevere in your effort to win affirmation” of the right to be properly identified on government documents.

“The ruling was unreasonable not only because it is contrary to prescriptions set forth in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Egypt is a signatory, but more especially because the sacred scriptures of Islam extol tolerance as a precept of social stability,” wrote the Universal House of Justice in the letter, dated 21 December 2006.

“Like other Egyptian citizens, you simply wish to be free to carry out the requirement of the civil law that you must obtain identification cards without lying about your religious beliefs. Possessing such a card is a common right to which every native-born Egyptian is entitled.”

“[H]ow strange it is that the custodians of the law would themselves oblige you to violate a government policy that all citizens without exception are expected to observe,” wrote the Universal House of Justice.

“Those groups supporting you in your current encounter are of a world-embracing vision and are themselves prepared to withstand the harsh resistance to their selfless occupation, sustaining blows of injustice in the process,” said the Universal House of Justice.

“Undoubtedly,” the letter concluded, “Egypt will rise to participate, as befits its stature, in the fruition of that destiny of world peace and prosperity of which all nations dream.”

s in their country have not only upheld their rights but in fact recognized that the Bahá’í Faith is a new and independent religion, as when an Egyptian ecclesiastic court ruled in 1925 on an issue concerning Bahá’í marriages.

“If Egyptian magistrates were capable then of such clear perception, and others in a local court have so recently shown a similar awareness, it seems reasonable to trust that this capacity will in the future reassert

itself positively at the highest level of authority in your country,” wrote the Universal House of Justice.

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Volume 18, Issue 1 / April-June 2006    One country

In Egypt, Bahá’ís face
 
challenges over religious identity and belief

 

A court ruling on all-important state ID cards stirs a major controversy in Egypt and the Arab world, drawing attention to the plight of Bahá’ís and larger issues of religious freedom.

CAIRO — Normally, a driver’s license in Egypt is good for ten years. But when Basma Moussa sought recently to renew hers, officials gave her one that is valid for just a month.

The problem is her state identity card is an old-style paper document, not one of the new computer-generated plastic ID cards that are currently being phased in by the government. Officials want to see the new card before granting a long-term license.

But Dr. Moussa, an assistant professor of oral and maxillofacial surgery at Cairo University, cannot get a new computerized card without lying — which is firmly against her religious principles.

That’s because Dr. Moussa is a Bahá’í, and the new ID card system is designed to lock out any religious affiliation except Islam, Christianity, or Judaism, which are the three officially recognized religions here.

The inability to properly renew a driver’s license may seem a small thing, but it illustrates a much wider problem facing the small but active Egyptian Bahá’í community.

Because of their inability to get new identification cards, Bahá’ís are gradually losing virtually all rights of citizenship, including access to education, financial services, and government health care — not to mention freedom of movement and security of property.

“By the end of the year, the acceptance of hand-written ID cards will stop,” said Dr. Moussa. “And at that time, everything in our lives will stop. We won’t be able to go to the bank, or have any dealing with any government office, whether hospitals, schools, or even at routine police check points.”

The whole issue of identity cards and religious affiliation has become something of a cause célèbre in Egypt since a lower court upheld the rights of Bahá’ís to be properly identified on government documents.

That ruling, handed down by a three-judge administrative court on 4 April 2006, held that government efforts to deprive Bahá’ís of ID cards were illegal — and that Bahá’ís, even if their faith is not recognized as a religion, have every right as citizens to be identified as Bahá’ís on official documents.

While Egyptian human rights groups immediately hailed the decision, influential Islamic organizations vehemently objected — including scholars at Al Azhar University and representatives of the Muslim Brotherhood.

“Public shock has given way to heated debate over an administrative court ruling sanctioning an Alexandrian family to designate itself as Bahá’ís in their identity cards and passports,” said Al Ahram, one of Egypt’s major newspapers, in its weekly English online version on 11 May.

Apparently in response to the outcry, the government filed an appeal and — after a somewhat raucous and unruly hearing in which lawyers representing the Bahá’í plaintiffs were verbally and physically harassed — the Supreme Administrative Court temporarily suspended the lower court’s order and called for a full hearing on the issue, now set for 16 September 2006.

Widespread coverage

The issue has received widespread publicity, not only in Egypt but throughout the Arab world. Since April, in Egypt alone there have been more than 100 newspaper and magazine articles, as well as numerous radio and television broadcasts, on the ruling, the reaction, and its implications.

“There is a huge interest in this case,” said Hossam Bahgat, director of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR), an independent human rights organization. “The human rights community, the legal community and the media are closely following it.

“This case is important not only for Bahá’ís but for all Egyptians as it will set an important precedent in terms of citizenship, equality, and freedom of religion.

“People on both sides of the case are mobilized,” said Mr. Bahgat. “There are people who are in support of the Bahá’ís, and people who see this as a threat to society or Islam.”

A cursory examination of some of those articles reveals a wide divergence of opinion over the larger question of freedom of religion and belief that many observers say has been raised by the case.

 On 4 May, the Arabic print version of Al Ahram, which has a circulation of more than a million, carried a headline that said “Crisis in Parliament Over a Judicial Ruling About ‘Al-Bahá’íyyah’ [Bahá’ísm].”

The article said the “majority, the opposition, the independent and the government deputies of the parliament all demanded an appeal of the ruling” that upheld the right of Bahá’ís to state their religion in official documents.

“The deputies stated that the issued ruling is in contradiction with the constitution and the tenets of the Islamic Shariah, which considers that ‘Baha’ism’ is not a Divine religion,” stated the 4 May Al Ahram article.

On the other hand, the government’s own Ministry of Culture, in its highly respected weekly newspaper Al-Kahera News [Cairo News], featured an article on 20 June that stressed the need for religious tolerance with respect to the Bahá’í case.

Written by Muhammad Shebl, the article discusses the Bahá’í case as “another round on Islam and freedom of belief.” Bolstered with quotations from the Qu’ran, Mr. Shebl wrote that “God created man and wanted him to be free… and gave him a mind to discern for himself.

“If God had wished to force all humans to worship Him in a certain way, He would have done so, but He allowed them the freedom to choose so that He can hold them accountable,” wrote Mr. Shebl. Therefore, he said, Muslims should respect the followers of all other religions, including Bahá’ís, Buddhists, and Hindus, and honor their choice.

Beyond Egypt, as well, the case has received extensive attention in newspapers, magazines, broadcasts, and various online media — including blogs. And, again, there has been a wide divergence of opinion.

Al Watan, a daily newspaper in Kuwait, carried a headline noting that Al Azhar scholars in Cairo called the April ruling in favor of Bahá’ís “the Greatest Setback.” The article then printed some of the points of misinformation that are often repeated by fanatical Muslims, such as that Bahá’ís are “agents of Zionism and colonialism and are enemies of the country” and that they reject Muhammad and aim only to “strike Islam.”

In contrast, Nabíl Sharafi’d-Dín, writing on 4 May in Elaf, which characterizes itself as the first electronic Arabic daily newspaper, said statements in the Parliament by Al Azhar and others could be seen as an effort to “victimize the followers of the Bahá’í Faith and launch what could be described as a campaign of hatred against the Bahá’ís.”

The court’s ruling

The lower court’s ruling on 4 April concerned the case of an Egyptian Bahá’í couple from Alexandria, Husam Izzat Musa and Ranya Enayat Rushdy, who sued the Ministry of Interior after they had their ID cards confiscated when they requested that their daughters’ names be added to their passports.

Judges Faruq ‘Ali ‘Abdu’l-Qadir, Salah-u-Ddin Algruani, and Hamed Al-Halfawi found that existing precedents in Islamic law indicate that Muslim countries have traditionally housed non-Muslims with different beliefs “without any of them being forced to change what they believe in.”

And since Egyptian law requires that every citizen carry an identity card that states his name and religion, it “is not inconsistent with Islamic tenets to mention the religion on this card even though it may be a religion whose rites are not recognized for open practice, such as Bahá’ism and the like.

 “On the contrary, these [religions] must be indicated so that the status of its bearer is known and thus he does not enjoy a legal status to which his belief does not entitle him in a Muslim society,” wrote the court.

The court ended its ruling by ordering the government to give identity cards and birth certificates to the plaintiffs on which the Bahá’í Faith is stated as their religion.

As noted, the ruling triggered an intense controversy in Egyptian society. The emotions stirred by the case were evident at the initial hearing on the government’s appeal of the case by the Supreme Administrative Court, held 15 May.

At that hearing, lawyers representing the government and other individuals seated in the courthouse “interrupted and heckled defense counsel each time they tried to address the court,” according to an account of the hearing that was posted that same day on the EIPR website. The lawyers for the Bahá’ís were called “infidels” and were threatened with “physical violence during the hearing.”

The  Bahá’í viewpoint

For their part, the Bahá’ís of Egypt wish only to be accorded the rights afforded any other Egyptian citizens — without being asked to lie about their religion.

“All that the Bahá’ís of Egypt are asking for is to be given citizenship rights and not to be noted falsely and fraudulently in our identification documents,” wrote five Egyptian Bahá’ís in a 13 May letter to the Ministry of Interior.

Labib Iskandar Hanna, who is among those who signed the letter, said that Bahá’ís would be satisfied even if the identification cards and other official papers that require one to list their religion simply offered “other” or “blank” as a choice.

“Previously, we used to put a dash or leave it blank,” said Dr. Hanna, who is a professor of mathematics at Cairo University, explaining how Bahá’ís were able to survive under the paper-based ID card system. “If you hit an official who was fanatic, we could go to another office and find someone who would accept it blank or with a dash.”

Under the new computerized ID card system, Dr. Hanna said, that option is locked out. Only the three recognized religions can be listed.

“Not having a new ID prevents us from getting almost anything,” said Dr. Hanna. “For example, if you have to renew your passport, they will ask for it. Or to enroll your children in school. Or even to do banking, the banks are now asking for the new ID cards.”

Bani Dugal, the principal representative of the Bahá’í International Community to the United Nations, said the issue has risen to the level of a major human rights concern relating to the freedom of religion or belief, as outlined in Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

“It is important to keep in mind that the debate is not and should not be about Bahá’í theology or belief — it is about the right for Bahá’ís to hold their beliefs and still be allowed all of the rights that other Egyptian citizens are given,” said Ms. Dugal.

Ms. Dugal said the administrative court’s judgment is essentially correct: since Egyptian law requires identity cards for all citizens, and also requires religious identification on those cards, it is unfair — and legally contradictory — to force Bahá’ís to identify themselves as Muslims, Christians, or Jews — which is the current government policy.

“The declaration on the application form makes the providing of false information an offense punishable by law,” added Ms. Dugal “Yet, Bahá’ís are being told by officials of the Egyptian government that they must declare themselves to be either Muslim, Christian or Jew.

“Most important for a Bahá’í, the declaration of his or her religion as being another is unconscionable as a matter of principle; such a false statement is tantamount to the denial of one’s faith,” said Ms. Dugal. “The Bahá’í writings forbid lying and dissimulation of any sort.”

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–  One county – Volume 18, Issue 2 / July-September 2006

 
Dr. Basma Moussa is shown here in a televised interview on Egypt’s Dream-2 TV channel, aired on 13 August 2006. The interview focused on her testimony before the National Council for Human Rights on 8 August 2006 in Cairo. Dr. Moussa presented the Bahá’í point of view on the national identification card controversy to the Council.
_____________________________________________________________________________
Egypt hearing highlights ID card discrimination for Bahá’ís

CAIRO — The Egyptian government’s controversial policy that requires citizens to list their religion on national identification cards, while also limiting the choice to one of just three official religions, was the focus of a major symposium here in August.

The event drew considerable attention to the plight of the Bahá’ís in Egypt, who endure discrimination under the policy. It forces them either to lie about their religion and illegally falsify their religious affiliation — or go without ID cards, which are necessary to access virtually all rights of citizenship here.

Held on 8 August 2006 by the National Council for Human Rights (NCHR), a state-funded, advisory body to the government on human rights issues, the symposium heard testimony from a wide variety of civil society groups, official governmental agencies and ministries, as well as the Bahá’í community of Egypt.

“Bahá’ís face a daily struggle now,” said Dr. Basma Moussa, the Bahá’í representative, explaining that without valid ID cards Bahá’ís cannot register for school, attend university, address questions on military service, apply for jobs, process banking transactions, or properly receive salaries.

Dr. Moussa said both international agreements and Egyptian law, however, guarantee freedom of religion or belief, and that the administrative issues surrounding the ID card limitations could easily be solved by adopting alternatives, such as leaving the section blank or simply allowing a fourth choice of “other” in the religion identification field.

Some 160 people were present at the symposium, representing not only some 57 civil society and non-governmental organizations, but also prominent thinkers and various representatives from the government, including the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of External Affairs, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Legal Affairs, and the Egyptian Parliament. Eighty participants presented testimony.

The event was introduced by former UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, who is currently president of the NCHR, and it drew wide publicity in the Egyptian news media.

“The purpose of the event was basically to put the issue on the agenda, and in this sense it was successful,” said Hossam Bahgat, director of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR), an independent Egyptian human rights organization. “It is a highly symbolic gesture, and a positive development.”

In April, the issue of religious affiliation on identification cards became the focus of increasing controversy when an administrative court ruled that Bahá’ís should be allowed to state their religion on government documents.

Fundamentalist Islamic groups decried the April ruling, while human rights organizations praised it. The Supreme Administrative Court was to hold a hearing on the government’s appeal of the Bahá’í case in November.

At present, government policy allows only the listing of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism — the three officially recognized religions, on ID cards and other documents.

The NCHR symposium sought to address this limitation — and it was also marked by an airing of all sides of the issue. Representatives of fundamentalist Islamic groups urged the government to keep its current policy, saying “public order” might be adversely affected if other religions were allowed to be listed or the listing was abolished entirely.

Among the concerns expressed by Islamic groups was a fear that any change would affect various issues relating to marriage, divorce, and inheritance, which are governed by each religious community here.

International law

Other groups, including representatives of Coptic Christians and various national human rights organizations, urged a change in the policy, saying the current policy is at odds with international law — and moral conscience — relating to the freedom of religion or belief.

Dr. Gamal el-Banna, an Islamic thinker and scholar, said for example that “the case of religious belief is a personal matter, which has no connection to public order, and that no one should interfere with it.

“We should be examining the standards of ignorance and prejudice, as well as the publications that darken our lives,” he said, according to published accounts. “Omitting religion from ID cards would neither lead to progress nor regress.”

Dr. Boutros-Ghali, in an opening statement, noted that “the three major religions represent less than 50 percent of world religions, but other religions account for 51 percent of recognized religions.”

“In the upcoming years Egypt will face further conflicts in religious relations, and newer religions will require recognition as they appear, so we should either approve and recognize all religions or eliminate religious classification from ID cards,” said Dr. Boutros-Ghali, according to published accounts.

The recent introduction of a computerized card system that locks out any religious identification other than the three officially recognized religions has made the problem worse for Bahá’ís, who were previously able to find clerks who might at least leave the religion field blank in old style paper ID cards.

Not only are Bahá’ís prohibited by their beliefs from lying, but it is a crime to provide false information on any official document here. Thus, unable to morally or legally list one of the three recognized religions, Bahá’ís are now prevented from obtaining new cards, and they are as a community gradually being deprived of nearly all the rights of citizenship.

In her presentation of the Bahá’í view, Dr. Moussa, an assistant professor of oral and maxillofacial surgery at Cairo University, read six pages of testimony before the Council.

Her testimony focused on the degree to which international law and the Egyptian constitution uphold the right to freedom of religion or belief. In particular, she said, Articles 40 and 46 of the Egyptian constitution both grant the freedom of religious practice and belief, as does the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Egypt has signed.

In view of these laws, Dr. Moussa said, “it is obvious that limiting the religions on the ID card to the three [official religions] interferes with the freedom of those who believe in religions other than those.

“In these cases, it is as if you are forcing a religion on the ID card holder, which is counter to what the law and the constitution state, and it goes against international human rights.”

Dr. Moussa also said there have been cases in other official documents, such as birth and death certificates, where Bahá’ís have been identified as Bahá’ís — or where the field has simply been left blank. “These alternatives prove to us that it can be done.”

She added that in other countries where Muslims are not in the majority, “they expect, and rightfully so, that their rights will be fully provided for. This, and no more, is what Bahá’ís are asking for.”

“We are asking that, on official papers, you either list ‘Bahá’í,’ or ‘other,’ or a ‘dash’ — or just leave it blank,” said Dr. Moussa. “This is actually all that we have asked of governmental agencies over the last few years.”

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In Egypt, Bahá’ís face challenges over religious identity and belief
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… Egypt, Jordan, and Iran. The main Bahá’í representative to the Conference, Techeste Ahderom, spoke. about the situation of Bahá’ís in Iran, suggesting that there is no better. example of genuine …
http://www.onecountry.org/e102/e10204as.htm

Egypt lower court rules in favor of Bahá’ís, opening door to ID card solution
… Volume 19, Issue 2 / January-March 2008. Egypt lower court rules in favor of Bahá’ís, opening door to ID card solution. CAIRO — In a victory for religious freedom, a lower administrative court has …
http://www.onecountry.org/e192/e19210as_Egypt_Court_Ruling_story.html

Perspective: The future of food: balancing the local and global
… In some countries, among them Egypt, Haiti, and even Mexico, the rapidly escalating price of basic cereals and edible oils led to riots. Although prices have declined since June, the crisis nevertheless …
http://www.onecountry.org/e194/e19402as_Perspective_The_future_of_food.html

In New York, panelists stress importance of interreligious dialogue
… Gaer said, likewise, that during a visit to Egypt in which the USCIRF investigated concerns over the oppression of Coptic Christians, Jews, Bahá’ís and certain “unorthodox Muslims” in the summer …
http://www.onecountry.org/e173/e17304as_Religious_Tolerance_panel_story.htm

In Egypt, the government decides not to appeal Bahá’í decision in religious freedom cases
… Volume 19, Issue 3 / April-June 2008. In Egypt, the government decides not to appeal Bahá’í decision in religious freedom casesk. CAIRO, Egypt – The Egyptian government has decided not to appeal …
http://www.onecountry.org/e193/e19307as_Egypt_Govt_not_appeal.html

Egyptian court removes barriers to ID documents for Bahá’ís and others
… CAIRO – In a ruling that opens the door to a new level of respect for religious privacy in Egypt, a court here has removed all grounds for preventing Bahá’ís from receiving proper official identity …
http://www.onecountry.org/e202/e20209as_Egypt_Court_docs_story.html

Latest volume discusses religious tolerance, new approaches to HIV/AIDS
… ” survey, and an update on the situation of the Bahá’í communities in Iran and Egypt . Also printed in the book are a selection of major statements by the Bahá’í International Community and a statement …
http://www.onecountry.org/e154/e15414as_Bahai_World_Volume_story.htm

OC183 layout 23 corrected final.indd
… In Egypt, court rules against Bahá’ís on ID cards, stirring concern over discrimination. Perspective: The eradication of violence against women and girls. 10. 2. 16. 6. NEFAS SILK LAFTO, Ethiopia …
http://www.onecountry.org/e183/e183fnl.pdf

World Faiths and Development Dialogue
… Alexandria and all Africa and Rector of the Alexander Nevsky Church in Alexandria, Egypt where he remained until his appointment to the Moscow Patriarchate in 1993. CHRISTIANITY – PROTESTANT …
http://www.onecountry.org/oc94/oc9405xs.html

Untitled Document
… governments – Brazil, Egypt, Ireland, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa and Sweden. – challenged the Nuclear Weapons States to implement several immediate practical. steps, including de-alerting …
http://www.onecountry.org/e111/Hague%20Appeal.htm

Full Text of Keynote Address on Human Rights
… national religion – with Isl m in Persia and Egypt, with Buddhism in Ceylon, while. the struggle for communal rights in India is allied with a revival both of Hinduism. and Isl m.” To understand the …
http://www.onecountry.org/e101/e101%20Bushrui%20full%20text.htm

One Country
… ” The panel included, left to right: Ambassador Tahseen Basheer, director of Egypt’s National Center for Middle East Studies; Dr. Edy Kaufman, Center for International Development and Conflict …
http://www.onecountry.org/oc73/oc7311cp.html

One Country
… recent article in Al-Watani Al-Youm, a national weekly newspaper in Egypt. The article, like dozens that have appeared recently, described the problems that Bahá’ís face over identity cards …
http://www.onecountry.org/e181/e18101ac_Egypt_story.htm

One Country
… Dr. Basma Moussa is shown here in a televised interview on Egypt’s Dream-2 TV channel, aired on 13 August 2006. The interview focused on her testimony before the National Council for Human Rights …
http://www.onecountry.org/e182/e18210ac_Cairo_ID_Card_Hearing.htm

One Country
… A group of Bahá’í women in Alexandria, Egypt, in 1947. About the Bahá’í Faith | Contact Us | Copyright , Bahá’í International Community …
http://www.onecountry.org/e181/e18113ac_Egypt_History_story.htm

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