(CAIRO) — Fearful that unlicensed clerics will stir up trouble, Egypt’s interim government has outlawed them from speaking out in mosques and prayer rooms not recognized by the state.
It’s expected that the edict will affect about 55,000 preachers, more commonly known an imams.
The new ban goes into effect before Friday prayers, considered by Muslims as the most important observance of the week.
Most of those who listen to the clerics are believed to be followers of the Muslim Brotherhood, the political group that helped former President Mohamed Morsi rise to power until he was ousted by the military in early July.
The Brotherhood is intent on returning Morsi to office while the government is just as determined to weaken its political opposition to the point of irrelevance.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Paul Cruickshank and Michael Pearson, CNN