BEIRUT: Sheikh Abdel-Latif Derian, who is expected to be elected Lebanon’s new grand mufti, is currently the head of the Higher Sunni Religious Court. Born in Beirut in 1953, Derian received his religious studies at the Azhar University branch in Lebanon. He then earned two degrees in Islamic religion and Shariah from the Islamic University at Medina in Saudi Arabia before going on to continue his graduate studies at the Azhar and Ain Shams universities in Egypt, where he earned several degrees in Islamic studies.
Derian held several religious posts, including secretary-general of Dar al-Fatwa, during the term of Grand Mufti Sheikh Hasan Khaled, director of Grand Mufti Mohammad Rashid Qabbani’s office, and director of the Association of Social Services, part of Dr. Mohammed Khaled Social Foundation. Derian served as the acting director of Islamic Endowments and as an adviser at the Higher Sunni Religious Court before becoming its chief. He taught Islamic Shariah at the Beirut Arab University’s faculty of law and at the Institute of Islamic Studies, which belongs to Al-Makassed Islamic Charitable Association. He has authored several books on Islam.
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on August 08, 2014, on page 3.