Coming up on the five-year anniversary of the Egyptian Revolution, which ousted long-time dictator Hosni Mubarak, the current military junta is trying to get out in front of any planned unrest, getting the nation’s top religious leader, the grand mufti, to issue a statement declaring any protests against them a violation of Shariah law.
The 2011 protested ousted Mubarak, and led to free elections, which installed President Morsi, a Muslim Brotherhood figure. He was removed from power and imprisoned in 2013 by the military, which has ruled the country ever since.
This has led to unrest on a lot of fronts, and the junta has been particularly brutal in putting down protests in the past. The new effort seems to be trying to prevent having to massacre dissidents, something which fuels a lot of international backlash, by convincing the public that dissent as such is religiously forbidden.
How well that argument works remains to be seen, but it’s being hyped by the junta’s Religious Ministry, which seems to have some hope that the junta can gain the religious upper-hand over the Muslim Brotherhood and other pro-democracy factions that might want to complain about military rule.