In this Tuesday, May 15, 2013 photo, Minarets of the Tahrir Mosque and two crosses on top of the Mar Girgis church are seen in Wasta about 40 kilometers away from Beni Suef, 90 kilometers south of Cairo, Egypt. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
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The Egyptian government has stepped up a campaign to curb Muslim Brotherhood influence over mosques, saying it has licensed more than 17,000 state-approved clerics to give Friday sermons to stop places of worship falling "into the hands of extremists".The military-backed authorities have been trying to bring mosques under tighter control since the army toppled Mohammad Morsi of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood last July after mass protests against his rule.Last September, the religious endowments minister said unlicensed clerics would be barred from delivering sermons at mosques -- long a recruiting ground for Islamist parties.
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