Egypt's top Muslim cleric condemns Islamic State as danger to Islam

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Egypt's top cleric has condemned the extremist Islamic State group, describing it as a "terrorist" organization that poses a danger to Islam and Muslims.

Grand Mufti Shawki Allam, Egypt's highest religious authority, said the extremist group is "violating all the Islamic principles and the intentions of the Shariah (Islamic law)." In his remarks, which were carried by Egypt's state news agency late Tuesday, Allam also said the "bloody extremist group" had tarnished the image of Islam and paved the way for the destruction of Muslim nations.

The Islamic State is an al-Qaida breakaway group that has seized much of northeastern Syria and huge tracts of neighboring Iraq.