02/05/2013 10:38 am ET Updated Apr 07, 2013

Ahmed Al-Tayeb, Egypt's Top Sunni Scholar, Scolds Ahmadinejad Over Minority Muslim Rights

CAIRO, Feb 5 (Reuters) - Egypt's top Sunni Muslim scholar told Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Shi'ite Iran on Tuesday that his country must give full rights to Sunnis living in Iran and refrain from interfering in the affairs of Gulf Arab states.

Grand Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, the head of al-Azhar mosque and university, also urged Ahmadinejad to "respect Bahrain as a sisterly Arab state", according to a statement issued by al-Azhar's media office.

It said Sheikh al-Tayeb also rejected "the extension of Shi'ite reach" in Sunni countries. They met on the first visit by an Iranian head of state to Egypt since the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, which overthrew the former shah. (Writing by Tom Perry; Editing by Paul Taylor)