Islamist groups in Algeria, especially the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafists, have been attempting to manipulate the people of Algeria by underestimating the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and undermining the series of preventive measures such as closing down mosques to avoid crowdedness.
Algeria said Tuesday it will temporarily close mosques as part of efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19.
In a statement, Minister of Religious Affairs and Endowments Youcef Belmehdi said the daily congregational prayers and weekly Friday prayers will be suspended.
Algeria has reported four deaths from coronavirus and 48 confirmed cases, mostly of people who recently visited Europe.
The Muslim Brotherhood and Salafists in Algeria have considered the decision by the government to be “malicious” and originally intends to control the religious scene in the country.
For its part, the Movement of Society for Peace (HAMAS) has alleged in a statement that the closure of mosques and suspension of prayers are decisions that require reconsideration, referring that such decisions come within a war against religion.
Also, controversial cleric Sheikh Shams Al-Din, also known as Shamiso, has also strongly rejected the decision to temporarily close mosques and halt congregational prayers, assuming religious places are getting cleaned and sterilized more than any other places.
The Muslim Brotherhood and Salafists are constantly seeking to hit the state circles by questioning the decisions issued by the Algerian Ministry of Religious Affairs and Endowments, especially following a decision by the ministry that clerics must get a permit from the ministry first before carrying out their duties.