During the 25 January revolution, Salafi scholars denounced protests as un-Islamic and warned Muslim youths against engaging in the uprising, but the hard-line Muslims became visible once Mubarak and his security apparatus fell. They were emboldened to stage more protests along sectarian lines. Some went further, announcing the formation of political parties to compete in the parliamentary elections slated for September. Some observers allege that the sudden emergence of Salafis is orchestrated by Saudi Arabia, which seeks to abort the Egyptian revolution for fear that the same revolutionary model would be reproduced on its soil.
Mehr zum Thema: Is Egypt facing a counter revolution?
Yasmine El Rashidi, how damaging is this latest outbreak of violence for Egypt's democracy plans? Is this, as the government says, a counter revolution?
YASMINE EL RASHIDI: I think it's extremely damaging for the democracy plan. I think it puts in question the position of the army. I think it puts in question the presence of the old regime and their hand in what's happening. And I think it is a counter revolution.