A twirl, a two-step, a shimmy and a whirl. None are likely to win points with Egypt’s Mohammed Mursi.
The Egyptian president revealed an early dislike of dance even before he took office, a recently resurfaced video has revealed.
In an interview with Mursi, filmed eight years ago, the then MP said that dance “violates Shariah (Islamic) law.”
Mursi also belittled an Egyptian dance school, saying: “What is this school? What is its role? What are its goals?”
“This school, with the known concept of dancing, violates the constitution's article II,” Mursi told Egyptian presenter Wael Abrashi on Dream TV 8 years ago.
Mursi can also be heard saying that dancing has a “negative influence on the viewer,” adding that the school “violates” Sharia law as well as the Egyptian constitution.
Egypt’s fine art of dance has taken a hit in the recent years particularly under the new Islamist rule.
Mursi’s old interview has resurfaced almost a week after an Islamist lawmaker threatened to close a ballet school in the country.
The lawmaker stirred controversy on Saturday after describing ballet dancing as “the art of nudity.”
Council member Gamal Hamed, of the ultraconservative Salafist Nour Party, said ballet dancing promotes “indecency” in society.
“[Ballet] is the art of nudity, spreading immorality and obscenity among people,” Gamal Hamed, a council member told Al Arabiya English.
The member also called for banning the dance because it is prohibited in Islam, according to a statement.
Angry artists took to social media to criticize the Islamist lawmaker. Some warned of legal action against him.