Minister of Endowments Mohamed Mokhtar Goma’a called for strengthening the penalty for electronic publishing related to terrorism in order to combat the crime, state run news agency MENA reported.
The minister said: “There are online terrorism brigades that threaten national security and deliberately distort national figures through sarcasm. Further, they divert the words from their context in a way that supports their extremist ideologies.”
He called for increasing efforts to combat those groups and terminate their activities. According to Goma’a, those groups are funded by foreign institutions to expand their activities online after losing ground on the streets.
Following the ouster of the Muslim Brotherhood regime in 2013, the ministry has been largely involved in the state’s war on terror. It has banned dozens of other preachers and undertaken further measures to regulate religious speech in Egypt.
The ministry was granted the right to arrest civilians, upon which a top Islamic preacher was banned in mid-2015 on charges of politicising prayers. In addition, scholar and TV presenter Islam Al-Beheiry is currently serving a reduced sentence of one year in prison on charges of ‘contempt of religion’.