Salafi Preacher Safwat Hegazy said on Monday that Shia Islam “will never exist in Egypt,” reacting to the recent visit by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
“Any country’s intervention in another country to spread its own doctrine means either that this country has a new religion to spread or that it believes the old religion is more valid,” he said.
In an interview with the satellite channel Al-Arabiya, Hegazy claimed that the World Federation of Muslim Scholars has researched Shia Islam within the Sunni world, alleging that “the research includes numbers that refer to what Iran does to turn Sunnis to Shias.”
“Were there Shias in Egypt 20 years ago?” he asked rhetorically, before claiming that there were no Egyptian Shias in 1973 and slamming Shia Islam as “blasphemous” and “wrong.”
Hegazy also accused Shias of being paid by Iran, without offering evidence, and said that Shias visit Egypt to perform “blasphemy.”
By contrast, Hegazy said that Wahhabism is a Sunni school and not a new religion. He also said that he would welcome the spread of the Hanbali school of Sunni Islam, since it was not a “blasphemous” one. (Egypt independent)