Thursday, July 03, 2008

Kefaya coordinator Abdel Wahab al Messiri passes away

Professor Abdel Wahab al Messsiri died at the Palestine Hospital on Wednesday, after losing his battle with Cancer. He was soon to reach the age of 70.

Professor al Messiri has been the Coordinator of the Egyptian Movement for change(Kefaya) since 2007, when he replaced George Ishaq.

Professsor al Messiri was attatched to the Ayn Shams University in Cairo and had spent the bulk of his academical career studying zionism, something that started during his college years at Columbia University and Rutgers. He returned to Egypt, and in 1971 , he got a post as a consultant at the al Ahram Centre for political and strategic studies, by no other than Muhammed Hassanein Heykal, upon a recomendation from a young Usama al Baz. He was to experience that it was as easy to fall from the top, as it had been climbing there, when he returned from America once again in 1979, he was treated like pariah, because the political climate had changed in the midst of the official euphoria of the Camp David Process. His expertise was no longer aquired.

He, as quite a number of his peers, started out with a steadfast leftist secularist outlook but later in life he (re)discovered religion and became part of the Wasatiyya(Centrist)trend.


Funeral prayers was conducted earlier today at al Rabbah al Adawiyya Mosque at Madinet Nasr. Among the mourners were Sheikh Yussef al Qardawy, Amr Khaled, President of the judges club, Zakariyya Abd al Aziz, Islamic intelectual Selim al Auwwa and leader of the Wasat Party Abu al Ela al Madi.

He is to buried in his hometown Damanhour later today.

Condolences will be taken at the Omar Makram mosque on Saturday.

May God rest his soul , my condolences to the family, may God give them patience and comfort during this sad hour.

UPDATE:

Amira al Houwaidy has penned an obituary in al Ahram Weekly, apearently al Messiri died of an heart attack, rather than Cancer.

As Kefaya did confirm a day after the passing of Dr al Messiri, the position of Coordinator will be held temporarily by Abdel Galil Mustafa.

A tribute to al MessiriĀ“s life and legacy was held at the Journalists Syndicate yesterday, July 10th.

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