Islamists want no-booze policy for Egypt diplomats

AP News
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Posted: Jul 25, 2012 3:26 PM

CAIRO (AP) — An ultraconservative Islamist party has called on Egypt's foreign ministry to enforce a no-alcohol policy at diplomatic events. That brought a quick official denial that booze is served.

The spat highlights fears in Egypt about the rising political influence of Islamists. The new president comes from the Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt's largest Islamist group.

The more radical Salafi al-Asala party demanded on its Facebook page Wednesday that the foreign minister order an end to serving alcohol at official functions.

The group's Salafi doctrine is a strict version of Islam that advocates segregation of the sexes and bans the sale or production of alcohol by Muslims.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Amr Roushdi replied the ministry doesn't have a budget for alcohol. He even denied that a budget for diplomatic functions exists at all.