London, May 7 (ANI): A group of lawyers in Egypt have tagged the latest republication of 'Arabian Nights' as obscene, insisting that they should be banned.
The literary classic, which features characters such as Sinbad the Sailor, Aladdin and Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, was described by the group as a call to "vice and sin".
"I was shocked at the offensive phrases it contains," The Telegraph quoted Ayman Abdul-Hakim as telling Al Arabiya. Abdul-Hakim is a member of Lawyers without Shackles, the non-governmental group that called for a ban on the book.
But a Writers' Union spokesman said the lawyers were acting "like the Taliban".
The GOCP Supreme Publication Committee said that Arabian Nights was an invaluable cultural heritage that could not be confiscated and a ban on the book would be an assault on freedom of expression.
"The fact that the first edition was sold out shortly after it was issued shows that Egyptians are avid readers and that they will not be influenced by a bunch of people who take advantage of Islam in order to suppress freedom," Ahmed Megahed, GOCP Chariman, said.
He also added that the new version was based on an older version, already revised by al-Azhar, the world's leading institution of Sunni Islam, and that there is nothing immoral or offensive about it. (ANI)