The Great Sphinx of Giza with the Pyramid of Khufu in the background. Source Wikimedia Commons. Image credit w:es:Usuario:Barcex

Cavan Sieczkowski writing in The Huffington Post on the 13 November reports that –

Murgan Salem al-Gohary, an Egyptian jihadist who claims he has links to the Taliban, has called for the “destruction of the Sphinx and the Giza Pyramids in Egypt.”

Al-Gohary, an Islamist leader and jihadist sentenced twice under President Hosni Mubarak for advocating violence, urged Muslims to “destroy the idols” in Egypt — specifically the Giza Pyramids and the Great Sphinx — during a television interview on Saturday on Egypt’s Dream TV, according to Al Arabiya News. “God ordered Prophet Mohammed to destroy idols,” he said, according to Al Arabiya News. “When I was with the Taliban we destroyed the statue of Buddha, something the government failed to do.”

Adding, “All Muslims are charged with applying the teachings of Islam to remove such idols, as we did in Afghanistan when we destroyed the Buddha statues,” according to the Egypt Independent. The jihadist refers to when the Taliban blew up a pair of Buddha statues and smashed other art forms in Afghanistan in 2001, according to The Jerusalem Post. These were symbols of the country’s long Buddhist history.

Full article here. See also our earlier feature The Bamiyan Buddhas: Eleven years on…