A top Sunni theologian faced a backlash on social media after he praised Buddhism and described its founder as “one of the most humane characters in history.”
Ahmad Altayeb, the head of Cairo’s eminent Al Azhar Institute, said during a conference in Myanmar that Buddhism is a “compassionate religion.”
Critics were quick to respond that Altayeb condoned discrimination against Muslims in Myanmar, while others said he ignored the actions of some Buddhists.
“[Egyptian President Abdel Fatah] Sisi’s dog,” Dr Ahmad Fathallah said of Altayeb on Twitter.
@RassdNewsN كلب السيسي
— Dr Ahmad Fathalla (@afathall) January 4, 2017
Mubarak tweeted: “May Allah’s curse be upon you, you are a crook, Allah’s enemy. Please Allah introduce him to Buddha in hell.”
@RassdNewsN لعنت الله عليك يالمنافق ياعدو الله اللهم اجمعه مع بوذا في جهنم انشالله
— مبارك (@RB6Tyc8fGPbmBEP) January 4, 2017
Neveen was sarcastically polite: “Please tell me, Sir, is there another religion other than Judaism, Christianity and Islam? Allah’s definition of religion applies only to them and said we should abide by it.”
— neveen gamal (@neveengamal1) January 4, 2017
“If that is the case, why don’t you convert to Buddhism and rid us of your disgusting presence?” Ghassan tweeted.
— Ghassan haj (@2012Ghassan) January 4, 2017
Ismail used a play on words in Arabic: “He isn’t Al Azhar’s sheikh, he’s Al Azhar’s destroyer.”
— اسماعيل (@CheGevara0073) January 4, 2017
“Does anyone have any doubt now that the Sheikh is not a Muslim?” Khaled tweeted.
— خالد (@khaledharbi00) January 4, 2017
“It’s not him who should be ashamed, it’s the cattle around him that listen to these lies and say nothing,” Desert Man tweeted.
— صحراوي مغربي (@SAHRAWIMAROC1) January 4, 2017