Renowned Egyptian author Taha Hussein's grave will not be removed, family says

Renowned Egyptian author Taha Hussein's grave will not be removed, family says
The family of celebrated Egyptian author Taha Hussein has denied reports that Egyptian authorities were in the process of removing his grave and replacing it with a highway
2 min read
18 May, 2022
Taha Hussein, one of Egypt's literary greats, is buried in the capital Cairo [Getty]

The family of renowned Egyptian writer Taha Hussein has denied reports that his grave was is in the process of being removed, the Al-Arabiya news network reported on Tuesday.

The family's statement followed outrage on social media following reports that authorities in Egypt were planning to demolish Hussein's tomb at his burial place in Cairo to make way for a highway named after Yasser Rizk, a pro-Sisi journalist who passed away in January this year. 

Hussein, who is known as 'The Dean of Arabic Literature', is considered one of Egypt's most influential writers, having penned the more than sixty books in his lifetime. He was also a leading figure of the Egyptian literary renaissance, and received fourteen  Nobel Prize for Literature nominations.

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He passed away in Cairo in 1973 aged 83 in Cairo.

In a statement to Al-Arabiya, Hussein's granddaughter Maha Aoun said that the authorities in Cairo informed the family that no decision to remove the tomb had issued. 

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Ahmed Mahmoud Abu Bakr, head of the Mokattam district, also denied the removal of any graves in the area, including Hussein's.

Hussein's resting place was marked by red crosses in pictures circulating online, stirring rumours that his tomb would be removed, reported Al-Araby Al-JadeedThe New Arab's Arabic-language sister site on Tuesday.

This sparked anger among activists online, believing that the potential removal of Hussein's grave was part of authorities’ ongoing neglect of Egyptian heritage sites, including the Imam Al-Shafi’i Mausoleum and the Montaza Gardens of Alexandria.

Archaeologist Monica Hanna, expressed her anger using the #SaveEgyptianCemetries hashtag.