Mazhar Shahin

Sheikh Mazhar Shahin (b.1974 in Tanta, Egypt) is an Egyptian imam and Muslim preacher, who became well-known during the January 25th uprisings and their aftermath. Shahin was born in 1974 in Tanta and received a masters degree in Quranic Studies from al-Azhar University. He then went on to receive a PhD.  in Islamic and Arabic Studies. He was then employed by the Egyptian Ministry of Religious Endowments (Awqaf) and currently serves as the imam to the Omar Makram Mosque in Tahrir Square, Cairo, Egypt. He often appears on television programs in his capacity as an imam. His sermons were considered revolutionary as he was one of the first imams to call for the resignation of former President Hosni Mubarak, which earned the title the “Preacher of the Revolution.”

Following the ousting of former President Hosni Mubarak, Shahin briefly backed the Muslim Brotherhood’s bid in the Egyptian presidential elections. Shortly after the rise of former President Mohammed Morsi to power however, Shahin became one of the Muslim Brotherhood’s fiercest critics. He lambasted Morsi for not reaching out to others and failing to achieve the goals of the revolution. He became so anti-Brotherhood that he went as far as saying that a man should divorce his wife should he find out that she supports the Muslim Brotherhood. Shahin was vocally opposed to what was dubbed the “brotherhoodization” of the state, including institutions like al-Azhar. He also criticized a group of clerics who called for the Pyramids to be destroyed as they were pagan monuments before going on to state that the Ka'ba was also built in pre-Islamic times. Mazhar Shahin’s criticism of the Muslim Brotherhood president Morsi and the military resulted in his temporary suspension as the imam of the Omar Makram mosque in April 2013. His suspension was overturned the same month. Shahin’s recent comments about Yusef al-Qaradawi seem to be in the vein of showing his displeasure at the perceived divisive behavior of the Brotherhood whom he recently attacked for their 'terrorist' actions.