Security Forces in Egypt arrest another suspect in the brutal murder of Shia Muslims. By Murad Makhmudov, Pierre Leblanc and Lee Jay Walker
21 Oct 2013
In June this year four Shia Muslims were brutally murdered after Salafists and other radical Sunni elements incited hatred towards this minority religious community in Egypt. Images of the brutal attack quickly emerged on social media whereby the disturbing scenes show a Shia Muslim being terrorized and killed by a rabid mob of fanatics. Of the four Shia Muslims killed one included Hassan Shehata who was a leader within this faith group.
Shortly after the brutal attack against Shia Muslims the Head of the Shia Current in Egypt, Mohamed Ghoneim, condemned the brutal slayings. He blamed the incident on religious channels which are spreading sectarianism and extremism. Sunni Muslim and Coptic Christian leaders quickly condemned the brutal attack against Shia Muslims.
The attack took place in the village of Zawyat Abu Musalam in the governorate of Giza. It is known that Salafists were in the forefront of egging on individuals to attack Shia homes. Video footage shows the blind hatred of radical Sunni zealots and how mob hatred knows no boundaries when it comes to brutality and cowardice. Sadly, since this event many Coptic Christian churches and Christians from several denominations have also been attacked by the same forces of hatred.
Ahram Online reports that “Former Salafist parliamentarians had frequently expressed misgivings over ousted president Mohamed Morsi’s plans to restore diplomatic ties with Shia-majority Iran and to encourage Iranian tourists to visit Egypt. One MP went as far as branding Shias “more dangerous than naked women” and a threat to national security.”
“As Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood announced a call for jihad in Syria at a solidarity conference in June 2013, an Islamist backer of the president denounced Shia Muslims as “unclean”….”
The latest arrest of an individual accused in the brutal murder of Shia Muslims brings the total of arrested people to six. It is essential that Egypt does more to stem the tide of sectarianism and to monitor commercial entities which are inciting hatred. At the same time, the Salafists and militants within the Muslim Brotherhood must not be allowed to openly support areas related to charity thereby creating “a state within a state.”
Modern Tokyo Times stated after the brutal attack against Shia Muslims that “It is clear that the shocking scenes which were witnessed on social media outlets are a grim reminder that the “Arab Spring” is currently just a brutal “Arab Winter.” Indeed, religious intolerance is growing and females are often attacked by groups of men in Egypt. At the same time, the economy needs outside support and the indigenous Coptic Christian community is facing new hardship.”
If individuals don’t understand the blind hatred of militants within the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafi circles in Egypt then the TV host Khaled Abdullah sums them up. This Salafist individual – alongside many others – actually rejoiced and excused the brutal murder of Shia Muslims. Khaled Abdullah claimed that “Shias in Zawyat Abu Muslam were attacked because they had insulted the Prophet Mohamed.”
Also, “Several Salafist and conservative Facebook pages bragged about the murder of the Shias, claiming that that was just the beginning of the end of Shiism in Egypt.”