Conservative Islamic Sect Calls for Boycotting Christian National Holiday

Following the fatwa issued by a Muslim Brotherhood mufti, congratulating Copts on the Easter holiday was prohibited.

There have also been a number of recent calls made to prevent the celebration of Sham al-Nessim, an Egyptian national holiday marking the beginning of spring, which is celebrated the day after Eastern Christians Easter, which is also recognized as an official state holiday.

Fliers were distributed in the governorate of Beni Suef, outside of Cairo, which read "Sham el-Nessim is Not Our Holiday," and included a fatwa prohibiting citizens from celebrating the holiday.

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"Sham el-Nessim is a national and Pharaonic feast related to agriculture, but it has become linked to Lent and Easter so Muslims should not imitate the [Christian] other and celebrate it," the flier said.

"Allah ordained our Islamic holidays and how to celebrate them, thus we do not need to imitate others in their festivals in which truth and falsehood are confused," It added.

In the same context, Sheikh Yasser Bourhami, deputy chair of Salafist Preaching, issued a fatwa prohibiting the renting of tourist beaches in Sham el-Nessim.

He wrote, on the "Voice of Salafists" website on Tuesday that such touristic actions are not permissible due to the similarities with Christian holidays and the "evils" inherent in such beaches.

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