Spiritual leader of the Coptic Church Pope Tawadros II met with Constituent Assembly head Amr Moussa on Wednesday night to discuss amendments to the constituion.
The meeting, held in the Pope’s office in St. Mark’s Cathedral, was also attended by Ava Pola, the Church’s representative in the assembly, state-owned news agency MENA reported.
MENA also reported that Moussa told the Pope that the new constitution will be “100% civilian” and is “totally” different from the 2012 constitution. These statements were denied by Moussa, who told state-owned Al-Ahram that the assembly works “within the presidential decree assigning it (the assembly) to amend the 2012 constitution.” Moussa previously said in an interview with CBC Satellite channel that the assembly’s mission is to amend the 2012 constitution, yet the result will be a “constitutional document with new articles”.
MENA said that the Pope asked Moussa to change the wording of the third article, which says that “Egyptian Christians and Jews can refer to their own religious rules”. The Pope reportedly had asked to replace “Christians and Jews” by a much more general term, “Non-Muslims”.
Pope Tawadros II, who is the successor of Pope Shenouda III, gave his first weekly sermon in 10 weeks on Wednesday in St. Mark’s Cathedral in Cairo. The Pope’s last weekly sermon was on 26 June 2013.