Egypt's top religious authority approves Islamic bonds law

CAIRO, April 11 Thu Apr 11, 2013 10:53am EDT

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CAIRO, April 11 (Reuters) - Egypt's top religious authority on Thursday approved a law that would allow the Arab country struggling with a soaring budget deficit to issue Islamic bonds but said some articles passed by parliament must be amended.

The parliament led by the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party approved the law in March and referred it to President Mohamed Mursi. Al-Azhar, the country's leading Islamic authority, protested, saying its top scholars should have been consulted, as stated in the new, Islamist-tinged constitution.

The scholars have now agreed to the bill on Islamic bonds, also known as sukuk, on condition that certain articles are amended, according to a statement from the Senior Scholars Authority, part of Al-Azhar.